All of Ontario’s elementary and secondary school students will be shut down next Friday, February 21,  if the battle between the four teachers’ unions and the Ford government continues.

The unions are banding together, with a total of almost 200,000 teachers and education workers hitting picket lines affecting 72 school boards and 5,000 schools.

Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario (ETFO) president Sam Hammond accuses the government of not addressing critical issues, making a sham of contract talks that have been taking place sporadically for seven months now.

Harvey Bischof of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation (OSSTF) says by proposing to add mandatory e-learning, the province wants to lay the groundwork for private interests to benefit from education.

With files from Bob McIntyre,