Learning Development Courses

Learning development (LD) courses are intended to increase your knowledge of what it means to be part of our union, equip you to be a steward in the workplace and play other union leadership roles.

Courses are open to all SGEU members and stewards from any sector. Multi-day courses numbered 20 or higher require you to have taken other courses before being eligible.

To register for learning development courses in your geographical area, visit our training schedule and apply online at least 10 days prior to the course start date.

Our 2024 course calendar will be available by February 15.

If your local or sector would like to sponsor a course, please contact our Communications & Education Department.

Course Descriptions

Whether you're looking for a course that will introduce you to SGEU, help you understand your collective bargaining agreement, build your skills as a steward, learn about unionism on Turtle Island, or a different topic, you're sure to find something of interest in our courses.

Learning Development 10: Introduction to the Union and Role of a Steward

You will learn the structure of SGEU, your sector/local, establish skills in problem solving and gain confidence in your ability to be knowledgeable about your union. This course also introduces you to the role of a union steward within your workplace and SGEU. It deals with the qualities, roles and responsibilities of a steward; basic concepts of grievances; and a steward’s role in member engagement.

Length: 1 day

Prerequisite: Open to all members.

Learning Development 11: Respectful Workplace and Domestic Violence

The purpose of this course is to make participants aware of appropriate and inappropriate workplace behaviors and recognize appropriate responses to situations involving inappropriate workplace behaviors.

Length: 1 day

Prerequisite: Open to all members.

Our LD 12 course is called “Know your collective Agreement” and focuses on the language in collective agreements and its interpretation. It will be based on your specific CBA.

Length: 1 day

Prerequisites: Open to all members.

Our LD 20 course is second level steward training. It’s comprised of three parts and teaches you more about collective agreements, conflict resolution and grievance handling. The participants will practice problem solving techniques, preparing and presenting the grievances, at step 1. They will understand Duty of Fair Representation and representing workers as well as building on their skills in investigating and responding to members concerns in a timely fashion.

LD  20A - Grievance handling – This course helps stewards to understand different types of grievances, determine what is discipline , grievance procedures etc. Participants will practice note taking and filling out grievance forms. They will continue to further develop their investigation and interview skills.

LD 20B - Resolving workplace conflict- This course trains participants on skills used to resolve conflict. Participants will engage in simulation exercises and learn about different types of conflict, recognizing biases, being empathetic, using effective communication techniques in different situations, principles of conflict and steps to conflict  resolution.

LD 20C - Collective bargaining and interpreting collective agreement-This course encompasses two distinct training pieces.  First focuses on collective bargaining and enables participants to understand bargaining process, legal framework for bargaining, good & bad faith bargaining and roles of negotiating committee. The second focus to develop interpretation skills. Participants will learn about interpreting collective agreement and principles of interpretation and practice interpreting their own collective agreement.

Length: 20A (2 days), 20 B (2 days), and 20 C (2 days)

Prerequisites: Learning Development 10 and 11. Priority will be given to stewards (and those interested in becoming a steward).

Learning Development 30: Third-Level Steward Training

This is third level of steward training. The participants will continue with problem-solving techniques and contract enforcement. They will be engaged in practical exercises on negotiation and arbitration.

Length: 4 days

Prerequisites: Learning Development 10, 11, and 20s. Only available to stewards, members of negotiation committees/bargaining councils, provincial council members, sector and local table officers.

Learning Development 40: Union Governance Training

This learning development aims to create efficient, successful leaders with sound knowledge of union governance and appropriate leadership skills.

Length: 2 days

Pre-requisites: Open only to sector VPs, member of the bargaining council/ negotiating committee, provincial council members, sector and local table officers.

Learning Development 61: Member Facilitator Training

SGEU's member facilitator course aims to develop facilitators who can participate and take active role as co-facilitators during SGEU educational events.

Length: 3 days

Prerequisites: Learning Development 10, 11, and 20s.

This three-day training will equip participants with the information, attitude and skills needed to act effectively in an ombudsman role at SGEU events. The course is designed to strengthen participants' judgement in dealing with the conflict situations, and promote a thoughtful and respectful climate for discussion as a necessary condition of solidarity among members.

Length: 3 days

Prerequisites: Learning Development 10, 11 & 20B.

Indigenous Peoples (Métis, Inuit and First Nations) are the original inhabitants of this territory of North America, also known as Turtle Island. They make up the original labour force of Canada and all of us benefit from the wealth of knowledge, experiences and land that they share. In this course, Unionism on Turtle Island, participants will be asked to critically examine the privileges and advantages Canadians have gained by the continued marginalization of Indigenous Peoples. Participants will be provided with resources and information, and will engage in activities that will help to foster an understanding of the strength and resilience of Indigenous Peoples. Participants will also be asked to engage in uncomfortable discussions around residential schools, racism and white privilege, the legacies of which continue to perpetuate inequities in all aspects of Canadian society including the labour movement. Participants are asked to come with an open mind and heart, and to be ready to investigate current inequities and solution seek to find ways to make our workplaces, sectors, union and community reflect the true intent of the treaty relationship.

This three-day workshop will cover topics such as:

  • Historical timelines
  • Employment issues
  • The legal basis for Aboriginal rights
  • Explaining Aboriginal rights to union members
  • Common visions and causes between Aboriginal and union struggles
  • Building links between Aboriginal and labour communities
  • Candid conversations with an Elder

Length: 3 days

Pre-requisites: Open to all members

Steward's Corner

Steward’s Corner is a digital meet-up series for SGEU stewards to share information, strategize on common challenges, and get central updates on ongoing labour relations issues.

The goals of Steward’s Corner are to:

  • connect stewards with each other
  • address common challenges collectively
  • better connect stewards with Labour Relations Officers
  • build knowledge and skills for both new and experienced stewards
  • share information on emerging issues
  • identify how SGEU can better support stewards
  • discuss new ideas on member engagement, campaigns, and representation

Length: Half-day

Prerequisites: Open to all SGEU stewards.