TDSB, caretakers square-off over square footage

Arbitrator orders school board to change policy
|Canadian Labour Reporter|Last Updated: 05/26/2014

Caretakers working for the Toronto District School Board could be getting a wage hike after a retired head groundskeeper debunked the "bunker definition" — bumping the square footage up for most schools and, in turn, the pay.

The TDSB pays its caretakers based on the square footage of a school. The bigger the surface area, the bigger the paycheque. As such, Kevin Gossling — a now-retired head caretaker responsible for maintaining the grounds at James S. Bell Junior Middle School and Wellness Academy in Toronto — filed a grievance arguing storage bunkers should be included as part of size calculations, entitling caretakers to a higher rate of pay.

Gordon Luborsky, the arbitrator presiding over the case, agreed with Gossling and the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), ordering a policy change at the school board.