Teachers at Gilgandra High walk out over school staffing crisis

NSW Teachers Federation members at Gilgandra High School walked off the job today over the NSW Government’s failure to properly staff their school and other public schools in rural and remote parts of the state.

NSW Teachers Federation Deputy President Henry Rajendra said staff at Gilgandra were concerned their school had been impacted by the shortage of casual teachers which had disrupted classes.

“Teachers at Gilgandra High are fed up with having to cover classes where no casual teachers are available,” Mr Rajendra said.

“This is impacting on teaching and learning at Gilgandra High School and is yet another example of the current staffing crisis in our schools.”

“Teaching staff at Gilgandra want an increase to the school’s staffing entitlement and have called on the NSW Government to address staffing problems at Gilgandra and other schools across the state affected by the staffing crisis.”

Mr Rajendra said this week’s Rorris Report into the numbers of additional teaching staff required to meet expected enrolment growth in public schools showed how urgent it was for the Government to address the crisis.

The Department of Education projects total public school enrolments in NSW will reach almost 950,000 students by 2031, up from the 810,000 students in public schools in 2020.

“More than 11,000 additional teachers will be required by 2031 but we are concerned about the shortages in our schools now.”

“There are unfilled positions at schools across the state which must be filled if we are to continue to provide our students with the best possible education.”

“To do otherwise would be unfair to students, especially in remote and regional areas and impact on staff morale and well-being.”

“The independent Gallop Inquiry was clear that the NSW Government won’t fix the shortages or recruit the additional teachers required without a significant increase in salaries.”

Mr Rajendra said over the past decade the NSW Government and Education Department have weakened previously successful processes that ensured adequate staffing of all schools across the state.