The province has come to a tentative central agreement with Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) education workers, according to statements from the government and the union Friday afternoon.

A news release from the union notes that this agreement only covers ETFO’s 3,500 education workers, including early childhood educators and education support personnel.

An agreement hasn’t yet been reached for the union’s 80,000 teachers and occasional teachers.

“After a prolonged and difficult bargaining process, we are pleased to be able to bring forward a tentative central agreement to our education worker members that addresses their key bargaining goals,” said ETFO President Karen Brown.

“As we have been reminding the Ford government all along, tentative agreements are possible when all parties are genuinely engaged and when you give the legal bargaining process a chance.”

Minister of Education Stephen Lecce said the move would help bring stability to families and elementary students in Ontario.

“While we are making progress, we are again urging all remaining teacher unions to come to the table and sign a deal that ensures children benefit from uninterrupted learning for the next three years, with an enhanced focus on strengthening reading, writing, and math skills,” Lecce said.