Better staffing entitlements the goal

Federation’s staffing claims for schools and TAFE are “what’s necessary for a quality, strong and robust public education system, for students, for our teachers”, Deputy President Henry Rajendra told Annual Conference delegates.

“The union aims to lift the permanent staffing entitlement for every school,” he said. “Therefore, we will need more teachers and in turn we won’t be having as many teachers employed on one-year temporary engagements etc. They will be offered, and so they should, permanent work. We’ve always said there have been far too many teachers employed as temporaries when they should have been as permanent.”

The Department wants to engage in discussions from the beginning term 3 to review current staffing entitlements, given the state and federal governments have committed to ensuring every NSW public school is on a path to reach 100 per cent of the Schooling Resource Standard, which will provide additional recurrent funding for public schools.

Next schools staffing agreement

Federation’s claim for the next schools staffing agreement include:

  • replacing the alternating model of classroom teacher appointments, with those vacancies that remain after transfers being filled from scholarship holders and the approved to teach list
  • transfer arrangements for executive teachers and principals that are consistent with that for classroom teachers
  • a new statewide school promotions system
  • abandoning statewide averages and references to “no class need exceed”, and applying maximum class sizesno larger than:
    • 20 for kindergarten
    • 22 for year 1
    • 24 for year 2
    • 25 for years 3-10, and
    • 24 for years 11-12.
  • the re-introduction of a staffing differential to further support schools serving low SES communities
  • further reductions in maximum class sizes of composite classes in primary schools, reduced specialist practical class sizes in high schools including to address outstanding anomalies such as year 8 visual arts
  • addressing students’ factor of need, establishing SSP and support class sizes which are no larger than pre-2005 numbers
  • an improved staffing allocation for years 11 and 12, to increase breadth in curriculum offerings
  • establishing separate staffing formulae for K-2 and 3-6 in primary schools, and a unique staffing formula for central schools
  • the re-establishment of a Department and Federation Joint Committee to monitor and review the number and combinations of codes applied to every vacant position.
  • a dual-qualified School Counsellor and Senior Psychologist Education staffing entitlement that guarantees the necessary and actual access for all students to school counselling. This will account for school and community socio-economic status and geographic location
  • Enhancements in staffing in central and small schools.

Non-school based teaching service

The union will continue to pursue an expanded non-school based teaching (NSBT) service, fit to meet the needs of the public education system and for the need to be enshrined in a new non-school based teaching staffing entitlement.

Such a non-school based teacher staffing entitlement for the system must ensure the adequate provision of a permanent and experienced non-school based teaching service that provides support within the system for curriculum implementation, professional learning, student and teacher wellbeing and other essential learning services. It also protects the Department from the continued proliferation of outsourcing to for-profit providers.

TAFE Enterprise Agreement, Staffing Agreement and associated procedures

A central claims in Federation’s bargaining for a new TAFE Teachers Enterprise Agreement will be temporary to permanent conversion plus a formally negotiated Staffing Agreement and associated staffing procedures.