On-line Activity: Calculating Fair Pay At Work

This web-based assignment introduces students to learning how much money they can expect pursuant to Ontario's employment standards laws in particular work situation.

Three case studies provide students with opportunities to use the Ministry of Labour's pay calculators to determine how much money is owed to the workers in the case studies. It's a great introduction to a worker's right to fair pay and may lead some students to entering their personal employment data into the calculators to determine if they are being paid fairly for the work they do.

The activity should take 20 minutes to one hour to complete.

This teacher's guide contains the answers to each assignment.

Provide the STUDENT HANDOUT to your students.

Bright idea:


1.    Go to the Ministry of Labour web site (Employment standards tools) and locate the pay calculators

2.    From the case studies below, calculate overtime pay, termination pay and holiday pay due.


Assignment #1: Overtime Calculator

Anna worked at a local fast food restaurant during the summer break from school. She earned $10.25 per hour. In the last week of August, her employer asked her to work more hours than usual before she returned to school. She worked for 46 hours in the last week of August (excluding her unpaid meal break). Her employer has established a work week that runs from Sunday to Saturday.

Use the overtime pay calculator to determine her gross pay (not including vacation pay) for the last week she worked. Note that since Anna works in a restaurant taking fast food orders, she starts earning overtime pay after working 44 hours in a work week.

ANSWER: $481.75

Assignment #2: Termination Tool

Ajay has an after-school job working at a small independently-owned clothing store in the mall. He works 15 hours every week on the evenings and on weekends and is paid $10.50 per hour. He earns 4% vacation pay on his wages. He began working in the store on September 7, 2011. On May 6, 2012, his manager told him that he was being effective immediately. Ajay is wondering if he has any right to notice of termination or termination pay under the ESA. Use the Termination Entitlement Tool to find out.

Note: This small independent business employed only 12 people.

ANSWER #1: Yes

Given that Ajay was not provided with written notice of termination, how much termination pay (plus vacation pay payable on the termination pay) is he entitled to receive?

ANSWER #2: $163.80

Assignment #3: Public Holiday Calculator

Marty worked from July 6 to September 5 during his summer off between grade 10 and grade 11. His job involved answering phones and filing paperwork for a local business. He worked Monday to Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm earning $11.50 per hour. He received a one-hour unpaid lunch break each day. His employer established a work week that ran from Sunday to Saturday. He received 4% of his wages as vacation pay on his final paycheque at the end of the summer.

During the period Marty was employed Labour Day occurred, one of nine public holidays under the ESA, and he had the day off work. Use the Public Holiday Pay Calculator to determine how much Marty is owed in public holiday pay for that day.

ANSWER: $80.50