Catholic education sector commences ‘work ban’
THREE Bundaberg schools will join thousands of Catholic teachers around the state today, to take part in what is being referred to as a “work ban”.
Shalom College, St Mary’s Catholic Primary School and St Patricks Catholic School will participate in the work ban, after the Independent Education Union of Australia and employers failed to agree upon a new wage deal during negotiations.
Queensland Catholic Education Commission executive director Dr Lee-Anne Perry said the work ban would not impact education in the classroom.
“As industrial action begins in some Catholic schools today, the education and wellbeing of students is our primary concern,” she said.
“Industrial action is not expected to interfere with classroom teaching.”
The action will see teachers in the Catholic education sector forgo attendance at staff meetings and supervision duties during transportation, playground times, cover periods and meal breaks, unless student welfare is at risk.
Dr Lee-Anne Perry said Catholic school employers had extended a fair offer, but the union was now opting for industrial action, that could lead to school disruptions.
“Catholic school employers remain focused on finalising the negotiations and the union’s focus should also be on resolving outstanding issues so staff can vote on a new agreement,” Dr Perry said.
“The employer offer includes a 2.5 per cent wage increase, additional benefits for middle and senior leaders and reduced classroom contact time for primary school teachers.”
Employers require five full working days before strike action can occur and at this stage, no notice has been provided.