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Striking college faculty rally in Toronto on Oct. 25, 2017.

Thomas Campean/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Striking faculty and the council representing Ontario's 24 colleges resume bargaining today in a bid to end a labour disruption that has left 500,000 students out of class for more than two weeks.

Advanced Education Minister Deb Matthews said yesterday that both sides will return to the bargaining table at the request of a mediator to re-start talks for the first time since the strike began on Oct. 15.

Matthews has resisted calls for provincial intervention in the strike, insisting a resolution must be found at the bargaining table.

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The Ontario Public Sector Employees Union has called for the number of full-time faculty to match the number of faculty members on contract, but the colleges have said that would add more than $250-million in costs each year.

The colleges had put forward a four-year-agreement that offers a 7.75 per cent pay increase.

The strikes involves more than 12,000 Ontario college professors, instructors, counsellors, and librarians.

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