Page 18

18

ACT EDUCATOR MAGAZINE

WE CAN DO MORE FOR NEW EDUCATORS Meg Adamson - Primary School Teacher

I

t’s little surprise that support However, we also know that and mentoring is something most new educators rate

in the top slot on their list of needs.

new educators are the worst at reaching out for help, identifying when they’re not getting what they need, and asking for additional support. In my first year of teaching, I didn’t even know what an Enterprise Agreement was. I had no idea about my rights as a new educator and, even if I did, I wouldn’t have had the guts to stand up and ensure I was getting them. When I became more involved with my union, new educator rights was the first and most natural cause I was going to take up. I want other new teachers to get what I missed out on.

RIGHT IMAGE:

AEU members at the 2017 New Educators' Conference.

AEU ACT BRANCH

It started with ten newbies eating chips and dip in a classroom and asking all the stupid questions we’d ever thought of. Our support group consisted

solely of teachers in their first 3 years. This was done on purpose to make sure it was a safe space, free from judgement and outside influences. We covered topics from portfolios and reports to mental health and wellbeing. Nothing was taboo, and no question was dismissed. Even if it wasn’t the most professional and formal of gatherings, everyone came out of it feeling like they had a voice and knowing they could find support if they needed it. At the end of last year, I met dozens of other new educators from across the country. Their stories of exploitation and confusion around rights were overwhelming and saddening. Everyone was upbeat, and we know teachers do this job because they love it, but the common theme was that they all wished they’d had more information earlier. I decided

Profile for Australian Education Union ACT

ACT Educator Term 4 2017  

ACT Educator Term 4 2017  

Advertisement