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Community & Business

27 October, 2022

Silent rally amongst local teachers

In somewhat of a ‘silent’ rally, Gilgandra’s NSW Teacher’s Federation members responded to the state government’s decision to push through with a three-year award application, by wearing red in the workplace.

By Emily Middleton

The Industrial Relations Commission (IRC) announced they would go through with the application, which includes a wage cap of 2.53 per cent pay rise.

Gilgandra’s NSW Teacher’s Federation representative, Breanna Patton, said that at this stage the government has failed to show any commitment to negotiations, and that she wants to see a change as soon as possible.

“Not only is this proposed award well-below inflation level, we are the only state or territory in Australia whose wage increases have also included superannuation since 2014,” said Miss Patton.

“So far, the government has failed to show any true commitment to genuine negotiations with the federation to address the uncompetitive salaries and unsustainable workloads that have caused the teacher shortage crisis.”

Thousands of members rallied outside of the IRC in Paramatta between 7.30 and 8.15am on October 12. This meeting was live streamed on Facebook for members across the state to watch.

“Unfortunately, the flooding and road closures in Dubbo meant that the rally outside of Dugald Saunders’ office was cancelled. However, several teachers at both the public and high school wore red to school. Hundreds of photos uploaded to social media showed how widespread and supported this action was,” said Miss Patton.

Federation president Angelo Gavrielatos said that education is fundamental to a student’ welfare, and that “there is nothing more important in education than ensuring every child is taught by a qualified teacher every day, in every lesson.”

Miss Patton stated that in recent announcements about “release time”, don’t reflect the enormity that comes with the implementation of a new syllabus.

“Particularly when staff are working an average of 55 hours per week to keep up with already crippling workloads,” she said.

At the time of writing, there had been no response from the NSW government.

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