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Teachers to have say on design
The unregulated approach to school infrastructure projects is to come to a halt.
In response to teachers’ concerns about the Department’s approach to local building projects, Federation has been seeking agreed school building and infrastructure guidelines and standards that comply with the award, staffing agreement and syllabus requirements.
The union welcomes an agreement from Education Minister Rob Stokes that commits the Department to work with Federation to:
- revise the Education Facilities Schools Guidelines (EFSG)
- develop a governance process for the implementation of the revised EFSG that will assure local consultation, consistency with the guidelines, primacy of quality teaching and learning environments and compliance with legislative and departmental requirements.
This agreement will:
- regulate an area of the Department’s operations that involves significant expenditure and has direct implications for teaching and learning
- provide the means for Federation to insist in the provision of high-quality learning spaces informed by the teaching profession rather than inflexible “open space learning”
- allow Federation to monitor and pursue matters relating to syllabus requirements, Award conditions, the Staffing Agreement, Work, Health and Safety, and Performance and Development requirements.
For the first time, the union will drive the design of the physical layout of classrooms and other teaching and learning spaces, not architects.
Federation welcomes the Department’s commitment to implement a staffing maintenance guarantee for schools that are nominated for a rebuild or major refurbishment.
The guarantee will be provided from the moment of the announcement of a project and will last, as a minimum, for two years beyond the opening of the new building or completion of the major refurbishment.
Henry Rajendra, Senior Vice President