No. 08-21, 23 March 2021 | DOWNLOAD PDF
TO: QTU MEMBERS
Every School, Every Child
Today, the Australian Education Union (AEU) (the federal union) launched the Every School, Every Child campaign. This campaign is an extension of the Gonski and Fair Funding Now campaigns and calls on the federal government to give every school the resources it needs to help students achieve.
The campaign draws attention to the difference that can be made if every teacher, school leader and school has the resources necessary to support students.
Recent polls show that more than three-quarters of Australians (77 per cent) agree that the federal government has a responsibility to ensure that every school in Australia receives 100 per cent of the schooling resource standard. Under the current funding agreement with the state government, state schools in Queensland will only receive 89 per cent of this standard. The results of the same poll, which the AEU will release in more detail today, show that more than half believe that the federal government’s current share of funding/resourcing to state schools is too low.
Imagine a federal government that delivers for our profession. Imagine not needing to use personal funds to properly resource your classrooms and classroom activities. Imagine having an inclusion model properly resourced so that students can receive in-class support, teachers and school leaders can be released to develop individual learning and behaviour plans, and guidance officers, HoSES and other specialists can be utilised to support student learning needs. Imagine every school having more teachers and support staff, smaller class sizes and additional learning programmes. Imagine the positive difference it would make if every school was provided with the full funding needed for every child to succeed.
Over the coming months, in the lead up to the federal election, the Queensland Teachers’ Union (QTU) will join forces with the other affiliates/branches of the AEU to campaign for a federal government that delivers for the profession. A federal government that places students and the profession at the centre of its education policies and decisions. One that doesn’t rely on point-in-time tests to determine the efficacy of schools and the profession. A government that properly resources schools.
The Every School, Every Child campaign will be at the centre of this.
What can I do to help?
Join the campaign to make sure public schools are properly and fairly funded to provide teachers and school leaders with the resources they need to give every child the opportunity for a bright future.
The first steps in the campaign are simple. Visit http://everyschooleverychild.org.au and:
- sign the statement to political leaders (http://everyschooleverychild.org.au/statement)
- share your story (http://everyschooleverychild.org.au/yourstory)
Together we can work to elect a federal government that puts the needs of the profession, the needs of teachers, school leaders, schools and students at the centre of education. One that listens to the profession and properly resources Every School, Every Child.
For the profession – reducing members’ workload
The QTU has recently received inquiries in relation to the Workload Reduction Reviews poster produced by the Union. This resource was developed in consultation with the Department of Education.
It is easier to read than the agreed statement released by the Minister last year, which contained language that was deliberately broad. This statement was developed following negotiations with the QTU, and the information contained in the Workload Reduction Reviews poster includes the detail that sat behind the agreed statement.
The Union’s resources were reviewed by the department and include its suggested changes and amendments. It is the final document that was endorsed by QTU Executive and released to members.
Schools have recently received communication from the department suggesting that the policies and procedures of the department, including the P-12 Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Framework (CARF), and the Education General Provisions Act set minimum requirements for schools. By suggesting that there is “no maximum”, the department is enabling workload creep, leading to excessive workload.
Suggesting that these are minimum requirements adds another layer of complexity. The act and the policies should state what schools are required to do. The language of the department should not suggest that we need to do more.
We all need to start doing things differently. If we do not, how is workload going to be reduced? If everything stays the same, then what is the purpose of the agreed statement and the reviews that were released last year? Relying on local consultation committees in schools without clear guidelines/parameters further exacerbates this.
The poster illustrates what a school would look like if the requirements of the joint/agreed statements, policies and procedures of the department and the Education Act are complied with. We should be more focused on how delivering these requirements provides positive outcomes for students, and less on expectations to go above and beyond.
We need to stop celebrating working long hours to deliver an inferred expectation that schools are required to do more, as this leads to increased workload and has negative impacts on member wellbeing.
The QTU will continue to develop resources to support the implementation of the workload reviews and their outcomes.
Authorised by Kate Ruttiman, General Secretary, Queensland Teachers' Union
21 Graham Street, Milton, QLD, Australia, 4064