Australian Teachers to take Action
A Previous Rally by Teachers in Victoria
Teachers in the state of Victoria, Australia are planning industrial action after the breakdown of talks with the government
Teachers in Victoria are paid significantly less well than teachers in other parts of Australia such as New South Wales or Western Australia and they are demanding a 30% pay increase over three years. They say the government's offer of 2.5% is effectively a pay cut, since inflation is running at 3%.
Australian Education Union (AEU) Victorian branch president Mary Bluett is quoted on the AEU website:
"After eight months of negotiations, no progress has been made on major issues of salaries, class sizes, workload and the high level of contract employment. This is despite the Premier's commitment that the Coalition would ensure that government-employed teachers would become the highest-paid at their level in Australia. Victoria is at the bottom of the class when it comes to resourcing our public schools.The Baillieu Government continues to spend less per student on education than any other state or territory government and over the past 12 months has been responsible for over $2 billion in cuts and broken promises."
The Victorian government is making a further $481 million of cuts - including cutting vocational education, school building and reading recovery teachers. One in five teachers in Victoria are on short term contracts.
The AEU in Victoria is preparing for a ballot of members in early May and gearing up for a long fight with the government.