Unified funding call for elections

Federation has set joint campaign priorities for the NSW and federal elections, based around funding needs.

A significant and sustained increase in both recurrent and capital funding is fundamental for improvement, growth and certainty across all public education settings — and this investment must be a shared responsibility of state and federal governments. The Fair Funding Now! and Stop TAFE Cuts campaigns aim to ensure that both school and TAFE sectors receive funding that meets the needs of all students, as well as the professional support and resources teachers require and deserve.

At November Council, Federation’s Presidential Officers noted the state and federal elections provide opportunities for Federation to pursue the union’s policy priorities, for:

  • all public schools to be funded to 100 per cent of the Schooling Resource Standard to ensure that all teachers are equipped with the necessary resources to meet student need with additional loadings for low socioeconomic status, students with disability, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, language backgrounds other than English as well as remote and small schools
  • a growth in permanent positions, delivered as a staffing entitlement, filled by qualified teachers
  • investment in statewide system support for teaching and learning to replace failed ‘school autonomy’ policies
  • provision of high quality infrastructure in every community
  • repeal of unjust federal and state industrial laws that restrict the rights of all workers
  • industrial rights for teachers to pursue significant increases in salaries, without trade-offs, to reflect the value of teachers’ work
  • abolition of the market model in vocational education and training
  • guaranteed government funding of at least 70 per cent to TAFE
  • restoration of public provision of education in NSW correctional facilities
  • recognition of teacher professional judgment through the restoration of teacher-driven pedagogy and assessment
  • protection of teaching qualifications and high teaching standards including initial teacher education entry requirements.

In the lead up to each election, all members will be provided with background material alerting them to the essential elements of the campaigns.

To support the campaigns, Federation will develop a range of election material for Federation Representatives, Workplace Committees and Associations that can be used in community forums, at parent meetings, at workplace meetings, during lobbying exercises, on social media as well as for letterboxing and door-knocking. Paid advertising will be considered during the campaigns. This material will be available, where appropriate, in community languages.

Federation will continue to work closely with the AEU on the major national campaigns, Fair Funding Now! and Stop TAFE Cuts. A key message in each campaign will be to highlight the contrasting policy positions of the major parties. Federation will continue to work closely with Unions NSW in support of the ACTU Change the Rules campaign.

At the state level, the Senior Officers, will seek meetings with the Premier, the Leader of the Opposition and the Greens to outline the Federation’s priorities in the lead-up to the 23 March election. Their responses will be reported to members.