Ontario’s high school students are bracing for the possibility of two years without extracurricular activities, with the continuing dispute between teachers and the Liberal government.

The union representing high school teachers said it won’t rule out the withdrawal of extracurriculars.

The presidents of the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association (OPSBA) and the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) both said that under Bill 115, extracurricular duties are the one part of the job the government can’t control, impose, or legislate until the end of the contract in the fall of 2014.

Ken Coran, president of OSSTF, told the Globe and Mail that it is not out of the question that withdrawal of extracurricular duties could last the two years.

Although the government has the authority under the bill to block teachers from striking, it cannot force them to resume unpaid duties such as coaching teams, overseeing student council,s or providing after-hour tutoring to help children who need it.

David Clegg, the president of the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario’s (ETFO) bargaining until in York Region told the Globe that as long as the government allows the type of constraints in bargaining that Bill 115 imposes, it is unlikely that a return to normalcy will occur any time in the future.

The Globe also reports that more and more studies are showing the numerous benefits of keeping active after school, especially for students from low-income neighbourhoods.

After researching the subject for eight years, the Canadian Research Institute for Social Policy in New Brunswick said the study showed participation in clubs and teams is linked with the overall academic success of a school.

The research is taken into account in the United States, where it’s common for teachers to be paid for leading after-school activities and teams.