Teachers will hold half-hour stop work meetings at their workplaces during their first day back of the new school year in response to the State Government failing to progress negotiations over the summer break, the AEU said today.

“It’s unacceptable that teachers will start the school year with the same under-resourcing issues as last year because the State Government has failed to act on teacher concerns,” said Manager Roz Madsen, AEU Tasmania State Manager.

“Kids will continue to miss out on the in-class support they need and Tasmania’s experienced teachers will still be lowest paid under the Government’s current offer which is unacceptable on both counts,” said Ms Madsen.

“Teacher negotiators made themselves available to meet with the Government over the summer, but the Government has failed to deliver key immediate solutions for workload and class sizes or a willingness to negotiate fair pay.

“The stop work meetings are being held during a student free day as we are trying to minimise disruption, but if the Government continues to dismiss concerns of educators they will reluctantly be deciding on further stop work action during term time.

“The Government has two weeks before members meet, so the ball is in their court to respond to educator concerns and avoid further disruption.”

Some key concerns with the current offer for (DoE) teachers are:

  • Significant lack of detail
  • No movement on 2% – experienced teachers remain lowest paid in Australia
  • No additional in-class support (addressing class sizes)
  • Reducing primary teachers instructional but there would be no change until 2020

In 2018, around 4,500 Tasmanian teachers, principals and support staff filled stadiums and meeting venues in 20 locations across the state as part of unprecedented industrial action.

“We don’t want a return to the disruption of last year but the depth and breadth of educator concern about workload and pay is such that if the Government fails to show respect and move on pay and in-class support industrial activities will escalate,” said Ms Madsen.