8500 Catholic school Independent Education Union members, teachers and teacher aides, across 242 Queensland school sites are authorised to stop work today.
The IEUA-QNT has stated that after ten months of negotiations Queensland Catholic school employers had shown employees that they have:
– no plan to deal with the increasing workloads and pressures placed on teachers in their schools;
– no plan to deal with the fact the most experienced teachers in Queensland Catholic schools are paid less just
because of their postcode.
– no plan to deal with the inequitable conditions of some of their lowest paid staff including some school
support staff who are currently denied the community standard of four (4) weeks paid annual leave per year.
Queensland Catholic teachers are currently paid almost $7,000 less a year than their NSW counterparts.
The IEUA-QNT has said that it is time for Queensland Catholic school employers to: recognise employees’ legitimate concerns, respect their professionalism and reward their contribution to the quality of education in Queensland Catholic schools.
The Queensland Catholic Education Commission has said the IEUA’s continued comparisons to New South Wales are not relevant. The only reason they QCEC can give is that both states have different starting and finishing times across the year. Dr Perry of the QCEC said the employer offer of 2.5% is a fair offer in the Queensland schools environment, even though other independent and private schools have received more then 3% wage increases. The current CPI rate is 1.7 per cent which would mean with the employer offer of 2.5% workers in QCEC schools would only receive 0.8% increase in real terms.