Education Department cuts support for schools

The NSW Department of Education and Communities yesterday announced a state-wide restructure with further cuts to 300 teaching and administrative support positions.

NSW Teachers Federation President, Maurie Mulheron, said:

“Unfortunately for students and staff in our public schools, the state government’s cuts continue. Despite statements by Education Minister Piccoli that so-called front-line services won’t be affected, these cuts include positions held by qualified teachers who are leaders and experts in their professional fields.

“At a time when there is a new Australian Curriculum to be implemented, when schools are calling for greater professional support, the removal of expert subject specialists is appalling.

“It appears that regional areas will be hit the hardest, with not one curriculum specialist in English, Maths, Science, History or any other secondary or primary subject area left in a location outside Sydney. Indeed, there will be only one primary and one secondary specialist adviser in each curriculum area left for the entire state.

“With more than three quarters of a million students and over 50,000 teachers depending on such support, these cuts are grossly unfair and counterproductive.

“These cuts highlight the importance of supporting the Community Day of Action organised for 11 am on Sunday 18 November at Tumbalong Park in Darling Harbour, Sydney. Similar events are being organised for regional venues all around the state, with details available on www.puttingstudentsfirst.org.au

“At these events, parents, students, teachers, principals and community members will gather to call for a reversal of the cuts to public schools and TAFE colleges. With the news that an extra $1 billion has been found in the NSW Government’s budget through the identification of budgetary ‘errors’, it is clear that these cuts can be reversed and support maintained for students.”

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