Teachers want reduced face-to-face teaching to support quality teaching and learning

Teachers’ professional judgement would be the focus of a new campaign, in response to issues of work overload, Senior Vice President Joan Lemaire told Annual Conference.

“Our experience of burdensome, unnecessary work, bureaucratic and administrative work, is a reaction to the command and control mechanisms of accountability. This not only adds additional tasks, responsibilities, time and effort, particularly when the software systems are not functional, but they restrict and control aspects of the way we work, undercutting professional judgement and trust in the profession,” Ms Lemaire said.

Federation will seek commitments from NSW political parties that any new government will provide a reduction in face-to-face teaching time to allow classroom teachers, executives and teaching principals the necessary time to support quality teaching and learning including time for collaborative planning, programming assessing and reporting; to meet mandatory training requirements; to support professional learning and performance development activities; to develop support and strategies for students with additional learning and behaviour needs.

The union also wants a minimum lead time of one year for planning and preparation around significant changes in terms of introduction of new technology and/or software, curriculum change, accountability requirements and ‘reforms’.

Federation will also negotiate with the Department for a process that will determine the educational value of an educational ‘reform’ and its workload implications before implementation and incorporate an evaluation process of such ‘reforms’.

The union’s campaign will be built around a qualitative research project, “Teaching and Learning – Review of Teacher Workload”, being undertaken by researchers from Sydney University.

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Extra demands mean less time for classroom preparation, teachers warn