Nova Scotia's public school teachers are walking off the job today to protest the provincial government's plan to impose a contract on them.
Dozens of teachers and their supporters took their protest to Province House early today where they were loudly chanting outside as a marathon debate continued inside on Bill 75.
The Liberal government is expected to continue pushing the bill through the legislature after the law amendments committee heard testimony from teachers and members of the public Thursday.
Teachers told legislators that problems ranging from student violence to the neglect of students with learning disabilities will worsen if government pushes through Bill 75.
High school teacher Tim MacLeod says the rise in student mental illness issues is overwhelming teachers, while other educators said they can no longer cope with classrooms where students with learning disabilities aren't receiving enough support.
Premier Stephen McNeil has said his government has tried to negotiate an agreement with the Nova Scotia Teachers Union and its 9,300 members over the past 16 months, but continuing negotiations would only lead to ongoing disruption in the classroom.