Historic boost to NSW teachers’ pay will tackle teachers shortage

Beginning and top-of-scale teachers in NSW will become the nation’s best paid from October 9, helping tackle the statewide teacher shortage after the NSW Teachers Federation council this morning endorsed a new agreement with the NSW Government.

The agreement varies the current award and runs until October 8 next year. It represents the most significant improvement to NSW teachers’ wages in decades. It was struck after the Government withdrew a previous proposal stipulating 2.5 per cent wage increases over three subsequent years.

The starting salary for a NSW teacher will increase from $75,791 to $85,000 and the salary for a top of the scale teacher will increase from $113,042 to $122,100. All teachers will move to a new higher paying step.

School counsellors will be paid according to a new salary scale consisting of five (5) annual steps, which recognises their dual qualification and acute staff shortages in their discipline. School counsellors at band 2.3, senior psychologists education and leaders psychology practice will have their salaries adjusted to the same level as head teachers/ assistant principals, deputy principals and principals, respectively. School counsellors at bands 1 to 2.2 will move to a new higher paying step on the salary scale.

Casual teacher and casual counsellor school rates are also adjusted upwards from a two-step scale to a three-step scale linked to the steps 1, 3 and 5 of the new full time salary scale. Award based allowances are also increased by 4 per cent.

NSW Teachers Federation acting President, Henry Rajendra, said:

“This historic advance has been won by thousands of teachers who campaigned tirelessly. They are passionate about the teaching profession and absolutely committed to giving all kids a decent shot at life.

“Teachers will benefit from this agreement which will immediately begin tackling the teacher shortage. The ultimate beneficiaries are our children. Investing in teachers is investing in the future.

“We cannot forget this staffing crisis was a direct result of the former government’s wage cap that artificially suppressed teachers’ pay and their policy failures that pushed more and more work on to teachers resulting in intolerable and unmanageable workloads.”

Under the proposed agreement the current award will be varied and extended until 8 October 2024.  The Federation and the Department will negotiate a new three-year award to commence at the expiration of the varied award.