Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Media Release

Facts being ignored by Labor and the AEU

Jeremy Rockliff, Minister for Education and Training

The Australian Educations Union’s disruptive industrial action this week is extremely disappointing considering the Hodgman Majority Liberal Government has invested significantly in teachers, schools and resources during the past four and half years.

What’s worse is that the union has sought to deliberately mislead Tasmanians about the number of teachers in the public system.

Since we came to Government in 2014, there are now 142 more teachers, 193 more teacher assistants and 63 extra support staff including psychologists, social workers and speech pathologists in our schools.

During the election campaign we listened to teachers’ concerns about workload and class sizes. This is why we committed a record $324 million into education, including 358 more staff, and $192 million into school and training infrastructure.

As part of the current wage negotiation process, the Government committed to recruiting an additional 95 new specialist teachers, starting in 2019 to further address their workload concerns.

We do believe our teachers deserve a pay rise which is why our 6 per cent offer over 3 years, plus the record investment in more teachers and infrastructure, is fair, affordable and addresses the key issues of workload and class sizes.

It remains incredibly disappointing that this fair, reasonable and affordable offer was rejected by the union without being put to members.

By offering a 6 per cent wage increase, which is on top of the annual salary increments received by many teachers, we can keep the budget in balance while investing record amounts into more teachers, more support staff and better school infrastructure.

We have continued to negotiate in good faith and today I wrote to the AEU’s state manager Roz Madsen asking when we might see the union’s counter offer.

While the Government has always been willing to negotiate in good faith, it is disappointing that the union has not.

Tasmanian parents have every right to ask why their family life and child’s education was being disrupted this week when there is a sensible and affordable offer on the table.

This unnecessary industrial action by the union, and endorsed by Rebecca White and Labor, has affected thousands of Tasmanian families.

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    November 29, 2018 at 9:14 am

    Here, Mr Rocliffe, are a couple of reasons I went on strike:

    – This year I have done over 500 hours unpaid overtime creating resources to teach my students. That’s basically 6+ days per week working, and I am employed part time by your department.

    – Holidays? What are they?

    – I have spent over $1,000 of my net income on teaching resources because you and your federal cronies could not be bothered funding schools to the level required. Remember, you arbitrarily fired hundreds of teachers when you came to power! Those you have employed since don’t even reinstate the balance that existed BEFORE you took office.

    – You want to constrain the front line workers in this state to a 2% pay rise, an effective pay cut I might add, while you sit in your plush office and get handed a bigger pay rise on top of your already ridiculous salary.

    – Parents, of which I am one, are well aware of why we are taking strike action. Those I have spoken to are as supportive as we are apologetic for the inconvenience our actions have caused. They are also sick of your government’s arrogance, so please don’t claim to be innocent victims of a militant union.

    I’m not even slightly militant by nature, but you and your cronies, in the wholly owned subsidiary of the Farrell Group, are deserving of nothing but contempt. You are completely out of touch, and we have had enough.

    • MjF

      December 1, 2018 at 9:24 am

      Teacher … I have no reason to doubt your stated extracurricular man-hours invested. My wife is an ex-teacher and I regularly witnessed the hours she spent preparing work, marking, report writing, and her personal expenses on resources because the school’s cupboard was bare, etc etc.

      What is the AEU counter-offer, and what are your thoughts on non-union member teachers who stand to benefit from any improved outcomes ?

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