No. 12-18, 27 June 2018 | open as pdf 

Pay rise - NAPLAN Online ban changed - EB9 starts

EB8 pay increases

On 1 July, members will receive the final instalment of the pay increases achieved as part of EB8. It needs to be noted that the salary of an experienced senior teacher will now reach $101,000. This will be the first time in history that a classroom teacher in Queensland will receive a six-figure salary. This significant milestone ought to be celebrated by all members, as it was achieved through the collective work of teachers and school leaders.

Meanwhile penalty rates are cut for other workers

Also on 1 July, workers covered by fast food, hospitality, retail and pharmacy awards have their pay cut, thanks to a second attack on Sunday penalty rates, with more cuts to follow for most in 2019 and 2020. Same job, less pay: This is one reason for the ACTU’s national campaign to Change the Rules. If you’re not already part of the campaign, join up here.

NAPLAN

QTU members undertook a ban of NAPLAN Online in May 2018, with the aim of drawing urgent attention to the need for a review of NAPLAN and MySchool at a federal level and to persuade the Queensland Government to implement a review of the impact of NAPLAN in Queensland schools.

QTU members were successful; the Queensland Government has committed to a full review of NAPLAN and other states and territories are following Queensland’s lead.

The QTU maintains that the NAPLAN testing regime has had its day, however the test continues to exist, so in May QTU State Council called upon the Department of Education to negotiate a joint statement with the Union bringing about real change, at a central, regional and school level, to the practices surrounding NAPLAN that impact on QTU members and the way you do your work.

QTU Executive met earlier this week to consider the actions taken by the Department of Education and the state government in response to QTU members’ NAPLAN Online ban, including a commitment from Minister for Education Grace Grace to the review of NAPLAN in Queensland schools. The QTU was involved in consultation regarding the terms of reference (due to be released this week on the NAPLAN review web page here) and agreement was reached to commence negotiations for an enforceable joint statement to be presented to QTU State Council in August. Executive also considered the federal review of NAPLAN data presentation agreed to by the Education Council at its meeting in Adelaide on 22 June.

QTU Executive determined:
1. THAT the QTU NAPLAN Online ban be lifted in relation to preparation activities required to be undertaken by the Department of Education and the QCAA relating to NAPLAN Online in semester 2, 2018.
2. THAT participation of QTU members in NAPLAN Online in 2019 will be subject to the successful negotiation between the QTU and the Department of Education of a joint statement on NAPLAN and the commitment of the government to act on the findings of the review.

This means that QTU members in schools choosing to move to NAPLAN Online may participate in:

  • QCAA training: nominations commence on 1 July for training to take place in August and September
  • School and platform readiness testing/trialling to take place between August and November.

NAP trials

NAP trials are also taking place in a limited number of schools across the state in 2018. The QTU notes that participation in NAP activities is an obligation for the government school sector under the National Education Agreement between the Commonwealth and the states and territories, and an obligation for the non-government sector under Commonwealth schools funding legislation and funding agreements. Individual schools which are sampled may negotiate to be excluded from the sample if there are extenuating circumstances.

Aim up for EB9

Our focus and attention now turn to EB9 and the development of the QTU log of claims. Preliminary work has already commenced on the next EB, with the Union focused on the development of consultation material. Next term members will have an opportunity to voice their opinion on what should be included in the devolvement of the log of claims (via workplace meetings and QTU communications, i.e. web, Facebook, Newsflash etc.). Members are encouraged to participate in the various forums the Union is making available to members.

To date, substantial work has been achieved through the Promotional Position Classification Review (PPCR) between the department and QTU. The PPCR findings will strengthen the Union’s ability to advocate for higher salaries for our school leaders and heads of program. It is important to note that the QTU is the only body which negotiates EBs on behalf of Queensland state school teachers and principals. The final log of claims will be debated and endorsed at November State Council.

Ballot results – Fair Funding Now!

Thank you to all members and to Union Reps who conducted ballots in your workplaces (ballot closed 22 June).

Members voted overwhelmingly in support of all five motions. This sends a strong message to the Turnbull government that Queensland teachers want it to reverse its $1.9 billion cut to state schools for 2018 and 2019 and ensure that all state schools are properly resourced.

Through access to high-quality education, every child will be supported to become a confident, creative participant in society.

If you have not yet signed up as a supporter for Fair Funding Now! go to www.fairfundingnow.org.au and register your support. We will continue to campaign on this important issue out in the community between now and the next federal election, to ensure all schools achieve a minimum of 100 per cent of the schooling resource standard and that the federal government’s 20 per cent funding cap for state schools is lifted.

Ballot summary: 561 workplaces were involved and 16,003 members had their say:

Ballot summary (as at 22 June) For Against
1.   THAT QTU members urge the Turnbull government to immediately reverse its $1.9 billion cut to state schools in 2018/19 and remove the 20 per cent cap on the Commonwealth Government contribution to the schooling resource standard (SRS) for state schools. 15,863 (99%) 140
2.   THAT QTU members acknowledge the success of the Investing for Success (I4S) program and demand the Commonwealth and Queensland governments fund 100 per cent of the SRS to state schools by 2023. 15,854 (99%) 131
3.   THAT QTU members call on the Turnbull government to contribute to capital funding for state schools’ facilities in Queensland 15,856 (99%) 114
4.   THAT QTU members reiterate support for a ballot for industrial action to ban unacceptable or unsupported changes (such as a standardised phonics assessment for six-year old’s) that the federal government attempts to impose as part of funding arrangements. 15,560 (97%) 411 (2%)
5.   THAT we the QTU members support the Change the Rules campaign to achieve: secure jobs for employees, better pay risings, a living wage – not just minimum wages, fair bargaining processes and enforceable rights for workers and their unions. 15,797 (98%) 200 (1%)

Change the Rules

The rules are broken. Inequality in Australia is at a 70-year high. The top one per cent own more than the bottom 70 per cent. 40 per cent of Australian workers are in insecure work. By working together, we can Change the Rules.

Come along to the meeting being held on Monday 16 July from 5.30-7.30pm at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, Merivale Street and Glenelg Street, South Brisbane. Special guests ACTU Secretary Sally McManus and activist and film star Danny Glover RSVP here.

QTU membership is vital

At the time of writing, we are in the final week of the special membership offer, which has enabled us to welcome more than 500 new members. They have joined with more than 45,350 teachers and principals from primary, secondary, special, P-12 schools and TAFE institutes across Queensland in the Queensland Teachers’ Union.

If any of your colleagues or friends have been meaning to join but still haven’t had the chance – encourage them to join the QTU and share in the successes and the peace of mind that this Union offers.

The QTU wishes you a safe and relaxing vacation break.


 Authorised by Graham Moloney, General Secretary, Queensland Teachers' Union