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Schools give their voice to teaching inquiry
Submissions are flowing in from schools across the state to the Valuing the Teaching Profession — an independent inquiry, emphasising the extent and complexity of changes to teachers’ work.
From Junee and Dubbo to metropolitan schools such as Concord, Workplace Committees have come together to outline — in their settings — the increased work, skills and professional development that teachers have taken on to maximise their core purpose; teaching and learning.
One submission stated: “Teachers have responded positively to the professional learning and have, overwhelmingly, appreciated the time that they received in order to reflect critically on their own and others’ teaching practice in a professional and collegial atmosphere.”
An example underlined the mounting expectations of students and parents, where “teachers are increasingly expected to communicate across a range of different platforms, including face-to-face, email, digital learning spaces, phone calls, social media, newsletters”, often out of working hours.
Other submissions highlighted the extra workload and stress of completing “paperwork”, such as administrative requirements and data, while at the same time planning lessons for their students.
Federation President Angelo Gavrielatos said the profession was experiencing unprecedented changes to its work that require a greater level of skills and a range of additional responsibilities to benefit their students.
“The value of that additional work and dedication must be recognised,” Mr Gavrielatos said.
“Numerous factors, including technology, the curriculum, student needs, the complexity of schools, social and parental expectations and government policies and prescriptions; have contributed to substantial change over the 16 years since their work was last examined for the purpose of setting appropriate remuneration.”
The Valuing the Teaching Profession inquiry, commissioned by Federation, is seeking submissions from school committees to inform its examination of the changing nature and complexity of teachers’ work in the 16 years since the previous inquiry.
An online survey of 6435 Federation members across the state in March showed 94 per cent of respondents felt the increasing complexity of their work was not matched by their level of remuneration.
Mr Gavrielatos said Federation has provided advice to Federation Representatives on making a submission to ensure the collective voice of members in all schools is heard.
“By making a workplace or individual submission, members will contribute to the production of compelling evidence as to why salary increases are warranted and overdue,” he said.For more information or to make a submission, click here.
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