Public elementary school teachers are being threatened with $500 fines and other sanctions if they don’t tow the union line.

The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) circulated a memo among its 76,000 members as it plans to ramp up job action.

“Members deemed to be in non-support during a job action may be subject to disciplinary procedures that include the possibility of a monetary fine of up to $500 per day,” the memo states.

The union also says members who violate the professional code of conduct could face sanctions including “publication of name in a Federation publication, suspension of the right to hold office in the Federation and suspension of Federation services except those required by law.”

“It is in no way a threat to our members,” ETFO president Sam Hammond told CityNews.

“I have a responsibility to completely inform my members of next steps and/or consequences related to those actions.That’s all a part of our internal process that is democratically agreed to.”

The ETFO has called on members to elevate work-to-rule actions as of Dec. 10.

“We started with administrative sanctions and we have, as of this week, escalated that to include more administrative sanctions … and to include no extra-curricular activities across the province,” Hammond said.

“We’re now in a legal strike position … and we’re going to exercise all of our rights.”

Members have been voting online on whether to hold one-day walkouts the union calls “one-day political protests”. Voting is slated to end Tuesday at midnight. As of Tuesday morning, more than 45,000 members had voted.

The union also plans to launch rotating one-day strikes starting next week. Hammond said parents will be given 72 hours’ notice of where and when those walkouts will happen.

“I am accountable to my members, and they are speaking loudly and clearly,” Hammond said in a statement Tuesday about the online vote. “Why would educators, or any workers in Ontario for that matter, allow this government to willfully suspend employees’ fundamental rights by using legislation that puts itself above the Ontario Human Rights Code, the Ontario Labour Relations Act and the courts?”

Meanwhile, Ontario’s public high school teachers are refusing to participate in any volunteer and extra-curricular activities as of Dec. 10, their union announced Monday.

The boycott means all after-school programs and high school sports that aren’t part of the curriculum will be affected.

“Our members will be in the classroom every day, fulfilling their duties with regards to the development of curriculum, the delivery of curriculum, and making sure that the students are safe,” Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) president Ken Coran said.

Some high school teachers have already ceased some administrative duties.

Teachers are protesting the controversial Bill 115, also called the Putting Students First Act, passed on Sept. 11 with the help of the Progressive Conservatives. The legislation allows the government to impose a two-year contract on educators that includes a wage freeze, halved sick days and gives the government easier access to end strikes or lockouts. The governing minority Liberals said the measure was needed in tough economic times, but education unions claim the bill is undemocratic and quashes rights to collective bargaining.

Four education unions have filed court challenges against Bill 115.