Beginning educator issues on the table during Catholic sector negotiations
Negotiations for a new Queensland Catholic sector collective agreement will formally get underway on 31 March, with the first meeting of the Single Bargaining Unit (SBU) scheduled to take place.
Collective bargaining or negotiations is the primary way in which members protect and enhance their working conditions.
Members in Catholic Schools have been preparing for these negotiations since last year. Repeated delays from employers in starting negotiations has left employees with ample time to consider the professional issues they would like to see addressed in a new agreement.
Of the professional issues raised by members during the development of their log of claims (the document that forms the basis of the employee position at the bargaining table) are a number of issues that impact upon beginning educators.
These claims include:
Employees should be afforded a wage increase that acknowledges the importance of teachers and addresses rising costs of living.
The career structure for teachers should reflect the Australian Performance Standards for Teachers and provide access to Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher. Clear access to these roles is an important future career pathway for beginning educators.
Resourcing the expanding role of employees
Teachers are continually being asked to do more with less time. Greater clarity and an increase to the provision of Preparation and Correction Time is essential to allow teachers to undertake their duties in work hours. Additionally, teachers who mentor graduate colleagues should be entitled to adequate release time to ensure the best outcome for the mentor and the mentee.
Family, personal and community responsibility
Access to job share and continuing part-time employment is essential for many employees to balance family, personal and community responsibilities. Employees will seek a provision to ensure that access to these arrangements cannot be unreasonably denied by the employer.
The involvement of all members as bargaining progresses will be essential to a successful outcome in these negotiations. Get involved by attending chapter meetings, reading chapter briefings and visiting our website for updates.