AEU members win historical agreement for Victorian public school staff

4 February 2022

The Australian Education Union Victorian Branch has negotiated a landmark enterprise agreement with the Victorian Department of Education and Training for its school members.

“This is a significant agreement that teachers, principals, education support staff and parents and carers can all support,” AEU Victorian Branch President Meredith Peace said.

“Our new agreement, endorsed today by the AEU Joint Primary and Secondary Sector Council, makes important and significant inroads to address the excessive workloads faced by teachers. The agreement also delivers an important salary boost for our lowest paid education support staff.

“For the first time in over 30 years, AEU members have campaigned for and achieved a reduction in face-to-face teaching hours.

“The one and a half hour decrease to be phased in during 2023 and 2024 will mean teachers have more time for preparation and planning for student learning within paid hours.

“We have also achieved a commitment for 2000 additional teachers for Victorian public schools,” Ms Peace said.

New provisions will give teachers dedicated time within working hours to undertake essential work in relation to their classes and provide improved professional autonomy. A pupil free day dedicated to assessment and reporting and the re-introduction of professional practice days will also assist teachers to better manage their workload.

For the first time, Victorian teachers will be able to access hour for hour time in lieu to account for time spent working after hours undertaking school activities such as camps, excursions, and information nights.

Principals will benefit from more consultation about their workload when there are significant school operational changes and a funded commitment to reduce their administrative burdens.

The new agreement works to close the gender pay gap with superannuation paid to employees on parental leave for 12 months, with paid maternity leave increased to 16 weeks.

“This is an historic agreement that will ultimately see our students receive greater support to achieve to their full potential,” Ms Peace said.

“When we launched our campaign in April 2021, teachers wanted excessive workloads addressed, additional teachers employed, and salaries that reflect the value of the work of all school staff, particularly education support staff.

“Teachers, principals, and education support staff have achieved an agreement that brings us well towards that goal.

“It will significantly improve the conditions for public school principals, teachers and education support staff.

“This is a milestone win for staff in public schools and the students they work with, and I look forward to sharing the details with our members across the state as they consider the in-principle agreement.”

MEDIA CONTACT: DISHI GAHLOWT – 0434 159 833

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