While the QTU acknowledges that the only way to truly manage workload is to engage in strategies to reduce it, the new agreement does incorporate a number of clauses addressing workload management - after all, until strategies to reduce workload are identified, the need to stop workload creep remains.
The new agreement’s workload management clause (clause 2.17) sets out some of the factors schools need to consider when looking at workload, including judicious timetabling.
It states that, as far as practicable, the work of an individual teacher should not be unreasonable or excessive. It also provides a framework for workload management, including factors that should be considered when effecting change or allocating duties to teachers. This includes:
- (a) face-to-face teaching
- (b) the work directly related to the teaching and learning program of teachers’ class(es) (such as planning, preparation, assessment of student learning, collaboration, professional development and peer observation including feedback and reflection)
- (c) other duties related to the operation and organisation of the school (such as meetings, bus and playground duties, reporting organisational duties, implementation of government education initiatives)
- (d) other factors, including class size, curriculum mix, range of ability and age of students, demands and behaviours of those students, resources available and facilities.
Principles of good workload management, which will be included in the schedule to the agreement, should also be considered with regard to workplace reforms or other matters that might change how teachers perform duties.
The clause comes in to operation from certification of the agreement, but if schools are considering reforms for 2020, it should be in use now. LCC members and other reps should become familiar with this clause to enable discussion and effective consultation at the local level.
If members do not believe that these principles are being considered or used to address workload, the issue should be raised at the workplace in the first instance and then addressed through the dispute resolution procedures of the agreement.
Uploaded 23 October 2019