Page 1

Vol 50 I No.3

Official publication of the Australian Education Union (SA Branch)

May 2018



INSIDE: u Join

1 in June: Build strength at your workplace.

u Job

Insecurity: Turning back the tide.



GUEST SPEAKERS: Frances Bedford

Independent member for Florey

8.45am – 3.00pm

Clare Lindop

Retiring veteran jockey of 20 years

Olivia Brown

r Reas e s a tio tr n siz n • F a i r rtu t • Va e s • E q u a l o p p o o n a l l u e o u r p r o f e s si

Federal AEU Women’s Officer

n e em e n c y • R e m u n as l mu en t • S m a ll e r c atme ner a tio n • Fair tre

o k at n a b l e w o r u n i m e n t • Va l u e o r k uj dg ty • R e a s o n a ble w o e m e n t•


r p lo a d s • P e r m a g lo a r o f e s s i o n a l j u d R e ds • Per m anency •


7.00pm – 10.00pm

Film viewing: ‘Made in Dagenham’ + supper

Authorised by Leah York, AEU Branch Secretary, Australian Education Union | SA Branch, 163 Greenhill Road, Parkside SA 5063 © 2018

Australian Education Union | SA Branch 8:>Events&Courses

For further info or to register

or email Tish Champion on:

Adelaide City Campus Atrium ERE! 12.00pm – 2.00pm SEE YOU TH

Authorised by Pat Forward, Federal TAFE Secretary, Australian Education Union, 120 Clarendon Street, Southbank, 3006.

MINI [Members In Need of Information] AEU Information sessions we bring to you! Our new education modules are designed to upskill your sub-branch on a range of relevant and valuable topics. These sessions (60 minutes or less) are designed “bite sized” training that come to you. Topics include: • Legal Issues • Understanding your PAC • SSO Entitlements.

We will visit you! These modules will be conducted face-to-face in your site and can be held at a long break time (lunch’n’learn), after school or during a student free day.

To request a session, simply follow this link 5 2

8:>events & courses



[J1J ] Join 1 in June!

Join 1 in June page 11 Build strength at your workplace as we head deeper into EB negotiations.


INSIDE: u Join

1 in June: Build strength at your workplace.


u Job

Insecurity: Turning back the tide.

Fair Funding Now!

Job Insecurity

pages 4 – 7 Turnbull’s Gonski 2.0 has ripped billions out of public schools, so our campaign continues.

page 16 Turning back the tide.

Australian Education Union | SA Branch 163 Greenhill Road, Parkside SA 5063 Telephone: 8172 6300 Facsimile: 8172 6390 Email: Branch President: Howard Spreadbury Branch Secretary: Leah York AEU Journal is published seven times annually by the South Australian Branch of the Australian Education Union. Deadline Dates Publication Dates #4 June 8 June 27 #5 July 27 August 15 #6 August 31 September 19 #7 October 29 November 7 Subscriptions: Free for AEU members. Nonmembers may subscribe for $33 per year. Print Post approved PP 100000753 Print: ISSN 1440-2971 Digital: ISSN 2207-9092 Editor: Craig Greer Cover: AEU Federal Office Printing: Lane Print Advertise in the AEU Journal. Reach over 13,500 members across South Australia.

8172 6300


Dear Editor I am writing to say thank you to the union that I have proudly been a member of since 1967. Next week I retire and I believe that my employer could learn valuable lessons from my union who sent me two personalised, hand signed letters, both thanking me and congratulating me on my work in education. My years of service were accurately quoted and acknowledged and I felt valued. By contrast, I insisted on an exit interview with my employer, conducted in a school, where it is kept. State Office is not interested in my thoughts and feelings after 51 years of service. I also received, an electronically generated and signed letter reminding me that should I wish to return, not to expect favoured treatment. My years of service and contributions as a leader and teacher in schools did not warrant comment, but I was reminded that I

had made contribution (no detail) to an excellent education system. Sincere thanks Leah York for being a compassionate and active face of our union. n Jude Hines

[J1J] Join 1 in June!

Pull-out the poster from the inside centre spread and place on your site’s noticeboard.

The AEU Journal welcomes letters from members. Please keep contributions to 250 words or less. Letters may be edited for length. Send contributions to:

Join the AEU


AEU Information Unit

Monday to Friday, 10:30am – 5:00pm

)8172 6300 3


for public schools

It’s time to make fair funding a reality says AEU Federal President Correna Haythorpe. Schools are missing out

For 17 years, I taught in public primary schools in northern Adelaide and Port Pirie in South Australia. I wouldn’t trade my years in front of the blackboard for anything in the world. The ‘aha’ moments – when a student understands a difficult concept after grappling with it for hours – make it all worth it. Undoubtedly, the most frustrating thing about teaching is the lack of resources available to maximise a child’s learning potential. It’s like missing the last piece in a jigsaw puzzle. That’s where the federal government can really help to complete the picture for every child by providing the resources they need to learn. Instead, the Turnbull government has badly bungled education reform. How? It decided last year to strip $1.9 billion from public schools in 2018 and 2019 without any thought about the effect on student achievement, and it failed to consult the states. Next, it delivered a cacophony of buzzwords and lofty promises of an education ‘blueprint’ when it released the report of the Review to Achieve 4

“Every school needs to be resourced at 100 percent of the Schooling Resource Standard.” Educational Excellence in Australian Schools, or Gonski 2.0. The federal budget was an opportunity to put things right. After all, the latest Guardian Essential poll found that 88 per cent of Australians want the government to either increase education spending or keep it at the same level. But Turnbull ignored public sentiment and showed his priorities are not with our children’s education by failing to rectify the gaping resource shortages facing public schools. He has refused to meet the recommendations of the first Gonski review, which promised fairer funding for public schools, and he has failed to provide any extra resources to implement the recommendations of the second Gonski review. To rub salt into the wound, public schools will receive zero capital funds for much-needed new and upgraded classrooms, while private schools are handed almost $2 billion for capital works in a special deal.

The Turnbull government’s cuts leave nearly nine out of ten public schools below the minimum funding benchmark – known as the Schooling Resource Standard – recommended by the 2011 Gonski Review of Funding for Schooling. Those schools are missing out on the teaching and learning resources they need to educate their students. Yet, we know that when schools can give students the individual attention they need, we see improved educational outcomes. Just talk to the principals and teachers in schools where the first four years of Gonski needs-based funding has been used to deliver strong teaching and learning programs. They’ll tell you about the ‘aha’ moments that their students are having every day. The Gonski Review’s recommendations include greater long-term investment in early childhood education as well as more support for schools to better induct, mentor and train teachers and principals throughout their careers. This can only happen with fair funding. The $1.9 billion cut from public schools must be reversed and the cuts to disability funding for public schools in five states and territories overturned. Every school needs to be resourced at 100 per cent of the Schooling Resource Standard. To have any school below that benchmark is unacceptable. The onus is on our leaders, all of whom had their own ‘aha’ moments in years gone by, to make fair funding a reality. n


on Fair Funding

Every AEU member can play their part to support the campaign for fair funding in public schools. 1. Go to the AEU Fair Funding Now campaign website and sign up: takeaction

2. Share the campaign video on social media 3. Use the online form to email your local MP about how important fair funding is for public schools. n


We need Fair Funding Now! Edwardstown PS teacher and AEU SA Branch Executive member Kendall Proud reports on our campaign launch in Canberra.


he launch of the AEU’s Fair Funding now campaign on March 27 was a chance for an AEU SA delegation to talk to federal politicians about educating young South Australians. Our delegation was made up of myself, an early years teacher, Kathy Papps, our Principal and parent Stephanie Hensgen from our school’s Governing Council. Together we represented Edwardstown Primary School and, in effect, all SA public schools. Our day officially started on the lawns in front of Parliament House with press and photo ops and with a total of five parties and members to meet, we had a big day ahead. First, our delegation, together with AEU SA President Howard Spreadbury, met with one of the newest federal members, SA Senator Tim Storer. Senator Storer opposed the Coalition’s $80bn corporate tax cut which gives the lie to the argument that the original Gonski agreement couldn’t be funded. We started by asking him straight away about what he can do for SA educators and students before giving him some background on the AEU’s I give a Gonski campaign and why it was important. He was open to our message and listened to the stories about our school and how the Better Schools (Gonski) Funding has helped us grow over the last four years, and he seemed impressed with our results. We discussed with him how the Schooling Resource Standard works and on the whole, he seemed to agree with the need for a fair funding model. An ALP Education Caucus followed. A large group of teachers, principals, parents and union representatives were in the room and were able to engage in a robust discussion with the 6–7 members of the caucus. Many great ideas came from the different states, sectors and stakeholders. I was proud to be able to end the discussion with a final point about the benefits of focussing funding towards the early years of learning, especially in preschool, and closing the gaps whilst they are small and more manageable. Nicolle Flint, member for Boothby, was our next appointment. As constituents in

her electorate we were interested to see how we would be treated when asking for ‘more money’. Predictably, she stuck to the party line: “The Coalition is giving record high levels of funding, historically more money than in years before!” She was firm in saying that years five and six of Gonski were never budgeted for and therefore there were never any cuts to funding. We spoke to her about the Gonski money we do get and how staff have worked really hard and seen improvements in results. After seeing the performance of Nicolle Flint and having no desire to see a repeat from Simon Birmingham on the Liberal “record funding under the Coalition Government” argument, we decided to let him do the talking; we wanted to get him to take the lead and reveal his thinking rather than him responding to our questions with the same wellrehearsed responses. He very carefully explained his version of how the funding system works, complete with hand-drawn diagrams. I wanted to ask some really basic questions of him, like why is it your responsibility as a federal government to fund private schools and the states to fund public schools? The answer – “That’s the way it’s always been. If the state governments don’t spend the money you give them the way

KATHY PAPPS - Principal Edwardstown Primary School “When the difference between the funding we were getting and what we could have been getting under the original Gonksi agreement was made clear, it was quite staggering. To go to Canberra and express our position and what our school’s needs are to the decision-makers, was a great opportunity. It was good to meet principals and representatives from other schools around Australia and hear their stories about what they need in their schools – everyone had a different story … I mentioned to our local member Nicolle Flint that by comparison to some of the schools around us, we aren’t doing too badly. When you visit some of the schools on the other side of South Rd, for example, you can see they are struggling with resources and infrastructure. ” n

7 Kendall Proud (left) with Edwardstown Primary School Principal, Kathy Papps.

you want them to then why don’t you hold them to account?” He went off on a bit of a tangent at this point. When asked about capital works in private schools, he denied that they were specifically funded by the federal government. Really? While it was clear we have a lot of work ahead to convince the current government that we need more targeted funding in public schools, the day was informative and overall, a successful campaign launch. I look forward to you all joining me in supporting the future of public education in demanding fair funding now! n

STEPHANIE HENSGEN Governing Council Member

Edwardstown Primary School “As a parent, public school funding policies, procedures and promises can be confusing and often we simply trust that those in charge know what funding our children need to get a good education. The trip to Canberra was an eye opener. The complexity of how funding decisions are made between federal and state governments, from one school to another, and from one child to another is overwhelming. All parents want is fair funding for all children based on need and delivered in a way that gives our children the best possible chance at life success. A fair and transparent approach to funding is even more critical in an era where public education is becoming an increasingly popular choice for Australian families.” n 5


Gonski 2.0: a flawed report Professor Emeritus of Education Alan Reid says the federal government’s education blueprint fails to meet the challenges of the future.


he recently released Gonski 2.0 report was intended to set out a blueprint for Australia’s educational future. Unfortunately the report contains three significant flaws which call into question the basis upon which its 23 recommendations are built. First, the report starts with the claim that Australian schools are ‘failing’. As usual, the only evidence offered is the apparent decline in Australia’s position in the international PISA tests which are held every three years. The report ignores the widespread concerns amongst many international scholars about the validity and reliability of PISA tests; and does not acknowledge the fact that since PISA tests only three areas of the curriculum, the results cannot be used to make generalisations about whole education systems. The reliance on flawed data means that the analysis of the supposed problems with Australian education and the proposals for change, are correspondingly flawed.


“The crucial thing is to support approaches which nurture a love and a passion for learning, rather than opt for one which reduces learning to a checklist.” The second major flaw in the Gonski report is that it fails to explore the purposes of education in the 21st century. Beyond making a couple of vague statements about preparing young people for a ‘rapidly changing’ world or focusing on preparing students for the labour market, the report does not make a case for what role education should play in meeting the challenges facing Australia. Indeed, despite its claimed concern to bring education into the 21st century, the report is surprisingly free of any reference to some key current and future challenges – including environmental challenges, threats to democracy, the

implications on work of such developments as artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning and so on. An identification of the purposes of schooling is surely a non-negotiable requirement for any consideration of educational strategies for the future. Without a declaration of purposes, we do not have a reference point against which to assess the adequacy of the recommendations. The third flaw in the report relates to its understanding of ‘personalised learning’ which is the centre-piece of the recommendations. The report claims that to better meet the individual learning needs of students, schools must break away from the straitjacket of year level organisation. Of course a number of schools have already done this with some success. But the question of removing year level structures, cannot be separated from the issue of what is taught and how. And it is here that I have some serious reservations about what the Review Panel is recommending. There are many different approaches to ‘personalising’ learning. Some approaches enable teachers and students to negotiate learning programs based on interests and learning needs. For example, in the Big Picture schools in Australia and the US, students investigate topics or issues individually or in groups, and report on their findings. The key to the learning involves skilled teachers assisting students to make connections across the curriculum as they build understandings about key concepts and discipline-based knowledge. But that is not the version of ‘personalised learning’ proposed in the report. It recommends an approach where content and skills across every area of the curriculum are atomised into bite-sized chunks of knowledge, then sequenced into levels of ‘learning progression’. Students work on their own and, at regular points, use online assessment tools to test their readiness for the next chunk of knowledge. Once one level is mastered, they move onto the next. The report recommends that over the next five years, the recently developed and implemented Australian Curriculum should be rewritten so that every Learning Area and every General Capability is continued over page 3

PRESIDENT’S VIEW written up as a number of levels. It offers an example of ‘spelling’ being broken into 16 ‘progression levels’, with students mastering each level before moving lock-step onto the next. This version of personalised learning is not unlike the model of direct instruct ion which was developed in the 1960s. Its recent manifestation in the US has been a financial bonanza for private technology companies which have developed online tests and learning resources capable of tracking the progress of, and devising programs for, individual students. With such programs, students become individual automatons moving through standardised progression levels. And teachers are increasingly excluded from the process, as planning and decision-making is done by algorithms. The result is a narrow and highly individualised learning experience which is unlikely to prepare students adequately for the challenges of the 21st century. The point is that ‘personalised learning’ can take many forms. Some approaches will liberate learners, some will tightly constrain them. The model being proposed by the report is more likely to do the latter, and thus work against the benefits that could accrue from abandoning the organisation of schools by year levels. When Education Ministers from around the country meet to discuss the report, they must look closely at the version of personalised learning it proposes. Surely it would be better to evaluate a number of different models of ‘personalised learning’ than sanction an immediate overhaul of the Australian Curriculum based on one narrow and untried approach? The crucial thing is to support approaches which nurture a love and a passion for learning, rather than opt for one which reduces learning to a checklist. In summary, the report lacks an adequate evidence base, fails to articulate the educational purposes its recommendations are designed to meet, and offers a technocratic version of personalised learning. These three flaws mean that it falls well short of providing an educational blueprint that is capable of meeting the challenges n of the 21st century.

Lining up the ducks AEU President Howard Spreadbury outlines how our campaigns intersect.


nterprise bargaining for a new Agreement for members in schools and preschools has begun. It’s early days and whilst the AEU has lodged our claim with government, including the broad framework of conditions sought, the department and government negotiators still await their instructions. The AEU will keep members informed of progress in bargaining through regular updates. Our campaigning efforts must continue to reach and affect the hearts and minds of not only members, but also our colleagues who are currently nonparticipants in the struggle to improve wages and conditions, and the wider community. When we campaign concurrently to influence governments at both state and federal levels and for members working in different sectors, it often seems like we are juggling a number of balls in the air at the same time. However, when we examine the detail of our objectives in those campaigns we find threads and themes that are common in terms of what we seek to achieve. One such common element is security of employment for all education workers. A key element of the AEU Respect campaign is an increase in quality jobs that are secure and safe. This includes not only increased permanency, longer tenures, improved redundancy provisions and right of return, but improved staffing levels and adult/child ratios which will effectively deliver more jobs. This connects with another element of our framework which is the employment of more teachers to reduce class and group sizes at all levels. This would have the added impact of supporting students who bring increasing levels of

complexity to our schools and preschools. It would also provide more time for teachers to engage in collegial professional support and thereby deliver a heightened focus on professional responsibilities. There is a direct correlation with the national schools Fair Funding Now campaign which seeks to restore federal funding levels to those which were being delivered under the Australian Education Act prior to the Coalition ripping $1.9 billion from public schools. A fairer funding allocation and mechanism for public schools would result in the employment of additional teaching and support staff to deliver the programs required to ensure every child’s education is resourced to 100 percent of the Schooling Resource Standard (SRS). The TAFE Too Good to Lose campaign has at its core addressing the current employment of high levels of contract HPI (Hourly Paid Instructor) staff. A federal government commitment to restore at least two-thirds of VET funding to TAFE would likely see enhanced opportunities for more secure employment as programs, particularly in regional areas, are reinstated. The ACTU Change the Rules campaign also aligns with our objectives, aiming to create a fairer employment system for all Australian workers, with a strong focus on job security. This brings us back to another key element of our Respect campaign framework which seeks to deliver fair treatment for all members. This reflects a system that ensures access to all industrial entitlements in an open and transparent way, proper decision-making processes that are inclusive and consultative, and access to a safe environment, both physical and psychological. We are in this together because only together will we achieve the changes which we know are needed to enhance our work and our profession. n

TOGETHER WE WILL WIN. In unity, Howard Spreadbury 7

CO MM E NT that assume students need to have mastered particular basic skills, or sets of skills, before they can move on to other more demanding tasks (which is not the case for many children) • deficit views about the capabilities of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. These missed opportunities were an unintended effect of teachers trying to do what they believed was expected of them.

Teachers’ work – rich repertoires of practice Debra Hayes from the University of Sydney discusses the impact of different pedagogical approaches to the teaching of literacy.


ublic discourse about schooling generally assumes that it’s in crisis. The script goes something like this: There’s a problem and it’s big – really big! Test results show us Australia is going downhill and teachers need to be accountable. There are ‘evidencebased’ solutions but teachers are not using them. If they did, literacy standards would improve, test results would improve, and Australia would be among the best in the world again. Well we have some good news and bad news for you. The good news is our research, a long-term study of schools in communities in Australia experiencing high-levels of disadvantage, funded by the Australian Research Council, shows that teachers are indeed now implementing the ‘evidence-based’ local literacy agreements that they have been asked to implement and that their work includes a diverse range of research-informed approaches to literacy learning. The bad news is despite the highly professional and caring use of evidence based methods by the teachers in the four schools in our study, the literacy levels for children from the most disadvantaged families remain persistently low. 8

The majority of teachers in our study were implementing their schools’ welldeveloped literacy agreements. They were not loyal to methods of the past or inadequately trained. They adopted recommended methods of evaluation and regularly assessed their students’ progress.

Use of common pedagogies Teachers used what we call common pedagogical approaches. These often took the form of tightly scripted lessons, in which teachers, operating in good faith, implemented a range of literacy programs. The cost of such cooperation is well documented in the research literature – teachers’ pedagogical choices (choice of teaching methods) are narrowed, and their professional autonomy is weakened. This phenomenon is sometimes referred to as curriculum narrowing, and in the case of literacy, fickle literacies. We observed numerous missed opportunities for learning due to: • too much emphasis on only the kinds of skills that can be easily tested • narrow views of literacy constraining the purpose of literacy teaching and learning • a prevalence of models of teaching

Use of uncommon pedagogies We also encountered a smaller number of teachers who adopted uncommon pedagogical approaches. Their practices stood out from the more common practices of their peers because they were palpably different. These teachers incorporated the requirements of their school’s literacy agreements into an already rich repertoire of teaching practice. We observed numerous ways in which these teachers supported literacy learning by: • recognising the knowledge and experiences that students have, and connecting these to school learning • actively and positively connecting classroom practice to families and communities • designing learning tasks that were open ended and that demanded complex thinking and language • providing opportunities for students to think about significant personal and social issues, such as loneliness, hope and relationships, by engaging with relevant texts. These uncommon pedagogical approaches led to much higher levels of engagement and success by students. They built on relationships, especially with families and helped to develop trust that in turn can contribute to learning at home and at school.

The importance of a teacher’s body of work Barbara Comber, one of Australia’s foremost literacy researchers, has argued that we do not usually think of teachers’ practices as demonstrating a body of work, perhaps because it is so ephemeral and of the moment. Instead, teachers are assumed to translate theory continued over page 3


“These uncommon pedagogical approaches led to much higher levels of engagement and success by students.” into practice or implement policy. However, the uncommon pedagogies of the teachers we observed illustrated complex designs, that demonstrated their intention to keep learning about how to improve their work. These rich banks of knowledge and experience could well be considered their ‘oeuvre’ or body of work, in the sense of what they create across a career. How might we support teachers to develop their ouvre? What might the public discourse of schooling look like if it were to be based upon a deep respect for teachers, their knowledge and their understanding of the local conditions of teaching and learning? Peter Freebody and Allan Luke, two other highly respected Australian literacy researchers, reminded us some time ago that: “it is not that some literacy teaching methods work and others do not. They all work to shape and construct different literate repertoires in classrooms…What do particular combinations and blends of families of practices work to produce?”

Understanding teachers’ work is vital to improving literacy in Australia We need to change the script that blames teachers for low literacy levels by telling them how to do their job. Our observation of uncommon pedagogies is an indication of how doing a teacher’s job can’t be simplified into a set of ‘evidence-based’ methods. The prevalence of common pedagogies is a sign that educational policy is working, it’s just not working in ways that address the problem it is intended to solve. n Deb Hayes is Professor of Equity and Education at the Sydney School of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney. This article was originally published on the blog EduResearch Matters where links to cited research can be found.

The future of our union Branch Secretary Leah York discusses the AEU (SA) strategic review. quality TAFE system, in accordance with the ‘AEU Respect: Public Education Priorities 2018 and Beyond’ position statement.


ursuant to the Rules of the SA Branch of the AEU, the duties of the Branch Secretary include the ‘effective and efficient management of the Branch office’. Reviewing current processes and practices to ensure that we continue to be a leading voice for unionism and quality public education in South Australia is crucial. We also need to ensure that strategic planning maximises the focus on our union priorities, such as those debated at Branch Council in April: “Public education is a social necessity because it provides opportunities for, and is welcoming of, all students regardless of background. Valuing the widest possible diversity of backgrounds, it serves as a gateway to a democratic and cohesive Australian society.” As the respected and effective voice of the public education profession our priorities for 2018 are: 1. To build and promote respect for the profession and to protect and improve members’ workplace rights and entitlements.

2. To protect, promote and enhance public education as a vibrant and equitable system in accordance with the AEU Charter. 3. To grow an activist union through recruitment and campaigns that engage and develop education workers. 4. To advocate for equity principles in relation to human rights, social justice and environmental sustainability. 5. To advocate for adequate funding, legislative change and policy development to rebuild and reinvest in a

To that end, Branch Executive determined earlier this year that we would engage Paul Goulter, Secretary NZEI Te Riu Roa, to undertake a comprehensive review of our operations, structure and strategic focus. Paul has had a range of experience undertaking such work both in Australia and internationally, including reviewing other branches of the AEU. He has also worked for the ACTU as Director of the Organising Centre. Over the last week, Paul has addressed Branch Executive, carried out interviews with staff/officers and analysed underpinning documentation such as our rules, priorities, feedback from staff, and financial statements. We anticipate a detailed report with recommendations being provided in late July. Branch Executive will then determine future directions with regard to strategic focus and operational matters. Maximising the potential of our assets to properly resource our operations is also in scope. As the Committee of Management, Branch Executive has the responsibility to administer and control the funds of the Branch. The AEU’s Finance Committee will soon review current practice and develop a draft Investment Policy and Strategy for Executive’s consideration. Potentially the most controversial aspect of the review for members will be the future of the AEU building located at 163 Greenhill Road, Parkside. As a significant asset of the AEU, yet one that clearly needs refurbishment, an options study will be undertaken. No doubt there will be many considerations to take into account, such as the history and sentimental connection with the current site, member needs such as access to training and other union activities and associated parking issues, maintenance costs, work health safety, fit for purpose concerns, potential for income generation, just to name a few. Watch this space for updates. n 9


Are you working enough? Federal MP and Chair of the Standing Committee on Employment, Education and Training, Andrew Laming, doesn’t think so.


eachers often come under criticism for the hours they work and the number of holidays they take each year. This was recently highlighted by the bizarre suggestion from Queensland Federal MP Andrew Laming, that it would be better if teachers worked a regular 37.5 hour week and only took four weeks annual leave per year. Responding to significant outrage from teachers and their supporters, Laming responded, claiming his comment was in fact supportive of teachers – that they shouldn’t be working so much after hours and that spreading the work out over a longer period, i.e. 48 weeks of the year would be a better outcome. The reality is, Andrew Laming has form when it comes to teacher-bashing, and has regularly implied that teachers don’t work hard enough. Back in January, prior to the school year commencing, he came under fire from teachers and those who understand our work and its demands, for this facebook post: “Are teachers back at work this week, or are they ‘lesson planning’ from home? Let me know exactly.” Mr Laming is also fond of blaming teachers for the supposed poor perfor-


mance of Australian students against international benchmarks. A week after his outburst on teachers planning lessons at home he said this: “Our schools are slipping not just against the best, but in some cases against our own results just a decade ago.” “Surely we can be honest, and admit that like every profession, some teachers work hard; some not so much.” In many ways, it’s derogatory comments such as these from those with a public profile that have given rise to the AEU’s Respect campaign. For far too long teachers, leaders and support staff have been maligned by both politicians and the media, and more often than not the characterisations are based on nothing more than ignorant assumptions.

Educators work more In Part 2 of the 2010 Arbitration between the AEU and DECD, the Industrial Relations Commission (SAIRC) found that teachers’ work was “unreasonable, excessive and unsustainable,” and went on to say, “The fact that teachers and leaders have long periods of non-attendance between terms and

“...teacher and leader workload in the education sector continues to be a significant issue.” school years cannot compensate for unreasonable working hours during the school week and on weekends and in any event the evidence of the AEU’s witnesses indicates that the long breaks are also being eroded by work.” Despite the best efforts of AEU members to campaign against increasing workloads, teacher and leader workload in the education sector continues to be a significant issue. Even if it was practical, would working 48 weeks per year from 9am to 5pm result in a workload reduction for education staff? It might if children and students attended from 9am until 1pm and the rest of the day was free for lesson planning, marking, collegial engagement, administration, staff meetings, parent communication, professional development and so on. Maybe there’d even be time for a proper lunch break! continued over page 3

Crunching the numbers

misconception that educators get too much time off – see table below 5

The reality is that education workers might have less time ‘at the chalk-face’ than your average office worker has at their computer, but it only takes some simple mathematics to debunk the wide


Obviously, office workers and others working a nine to five roster have other stresses to deal with, and it’s unfortunate that the likes of Andrew Laming Source: established by the SAIRC in 2010

Average working hours per week

= 54.0

Weeks attending per year

= 41.0

54 hours x 41 weeks

= 2,214 hours

AVERAGE OFFICE WORKER Average working hours per week

= 37.5

Weeks attending work per year

= 48.0

37.5 hours x 48 weeks

“Andrew Laming has form when it comes to teacherbashing, and has regularly implied that teachers don’t work hard enough.”

= 1,800 hours

and others in the public eye make divisive comments that reinforce misconceptions about our work. One school of thought is that we should treat such outbursts as the poppycock they are and simply ignore them. However, at time when we’re campaigning for Respect – respect for the profession and respect for public education, the narrative from our elected leaders, and some in the media, needs to change. n


Build strength at your workplace Recruitment is everyone’s job, and in June your efforts could be rewarded, writes AEU Coordinator of Organisers, Andrew Gohl.


he task of signing up, welcoming new members and increasing workplace membership density often falls to the Sub-branch Secretary or Workplace Rep and Workplace Organising Committee, working with an AEU Organiser. To these active AEU members, on behalf of AEU members across the state – thank you for the work you do to build union density and strength through membership. However, as we lead into Enterprise Bargaining in 2018 to negotiate an outcome that begins to address the issues of complexity and lack of time to successfully complete the tasks expected of us and win a salary increase that adequately reflects the increasingly complex work of education staff, the AEU needs to be even stronger. The task of recruitment is complex, time consuming, and requires follow-up on subsequent occasions. It is work that requires sustained effort for a

small number of members and at times it is too much for too few. However, we know that most non-members simply just haven’t been asked to join. But what if every member asked and recruited just one new member?

Join 1 in June! encourages all members to recruit just one new member in the month of June.

Every member has a good working relationship with a potential AEU member on staff. It might be a faculty member in your office or an SSO with whom you share a coffee at recess. Ask if they are a member of the AEU. And if they aren’t a member, ask them to join. In the discussion, explain why you are a member, and how the AEU is important in the workplace. Membership is completed easily online through the AEU website (link below).

[J1J] Join 1 in June!

WIN! an iPad Mini 4 For the AEU member who joins the most new members in the month of June there’s the chance to win a new iPad Mini 4. Sites that achieve a 100% membership during June can celebrate that achievement with an AEU sponsored morning tea.

So Join 1 in June! and build AEU strength for Respect in the workplace and for a better Enterprise Agreement.

Once you’ve read this article, find a place at your site to display the pull-out poster over page and encourage your sub-branch colleagues to

Join 1 in June!



Join online today



iPad mini 4 will be won

In the month of June we are asking EVERY MEMBER to sign up 1 NEW MEMBER.

Join 1 in June!


Terms & conditions: Competition closes on Saturday, 30 June 2018. Results will be drawn on Monday, 2 July 2018. Winners will be informed on the same day and results will be available on our website Tuesday, 3 July 2018.

Australian Education Union | SA Branch Email us your results8: or call us on: 8172 6300

Authorised by Leah York, Branch Secretary, Australian Education Union | SA Branch, 163 Greenhill Road, Parkside SA 5063 © 2018



simply go to:

Join ONLINE today!

AEU sponsored morning tea!

THE SITES that achieve 100% membership, in the month of June, will be treated to a celebratory

by THE MEMBER who has signed up the most NEW MEMBERS.


New Eds will campaign for AEU New Educators Organiser Ann Clarke reports on another successful state conference.


ell, consider my mind blown. Again. It’s blown every year by just how amazing our New Educators are. What a privilege it is to convene the annual New Educators State Conference. The buzz and excitement in the room is always palpable as people in their first three or so years of teaching come together to learn, network and make change. It’s a real balancing act for New Educators, as it is for many of us working in education. Between trying to find work, figuring out what to do with the twentyfive (plus) young people in front of them, understanding their rights and obligations and trying to have a life, things can get pretty crazy. And so, the conference is a balancing act too. We want it to be useful to New Educators as teachers, e.g. here’s something you can take back to the classroom. We want New Educators to understand they have rights, and that they’re allowed to ask for them. And we want them to know that looking after themselves is important. We also want to develop the next generation of strong

“Together we will win Respect and Change the Rules.”

In this toolkit you will find the information you need to help you build the campaign to Change The Rules for working people. There are two things you need to do:

1 New Educators at this year’s conference.

union members – it’s important for New Educators to understand that the rights they have were fought for and won, and that they now need to take the baton and keep the improvements coming. I think we managed that this year, as we have done in years gone by. With workshops ranging from classroom management, application writing, legal issues, country teaching, to fitness circuits and meditation, members had the opportunity to tick all the boxes. But where my mind was blown was the reaction of the participants to our


Tell the story of inequality and power.


Find local stories of the broken rules.

session around our Respect campaign and the ties with the ACTU Change the Rules campaign. It was like being back in the classroom, watching the ‘light bulb moment’. But it wasn’t just one or two students getting it, which on some days is a real win, but seeing the hundred or so faces click to the on position. This is why we’re union, so that together we can achieve better outcomes. The guts of all this couldn’t be clearer than the conference statement, which was unanimously endorsed at the closing of the event. “The 2018 New Educators State Conference will stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our fellow union members to show the strength of the AEU. We will be proud, positive and visible union members and encourage membership in our peers. Together we will win Respect and Change the Rules.” Wow! Mind blown. n

New Educator profile The Journal talks to Anthea Papagiannis of Balaklava High School who attended the state conference.

JOURNAL: How long have you been teaching and what subjects do you teach? 14

ANTHEA: This is my first year and I teach French and English. JOURNAL: What was your university experience like? ANTHEA: I really loved it. I spent a solid five years there and made the most of it. I did a double degree: Bachelor of Teaching, Bachelor of Arts and a Diploma of Languages, it was pretty full-on, especially when you’re working parttime as well, but the job funded all my overseas exchanges, which was good. JOURNAL: Were you expecting to get a job when you finished your degrees? ANTHEA: No. But I was applying for permanent jobs all last year and I was lucky enough to get one, so I’m very

happy. It was one of the last positions that came up in the last round and I’d received some good feedback on my personal statement, and I changed it quite a lot for this job. JOURNAL: What’s it like being in the classroom? Is it what you expected? ANTHEA: There are a lot of similarities to what I experienced on practicum but the real shock was the amount of work I’m doing outside of hours; you don’t do a lot of the marking on prac but when you have five classes with a fulltime load, the workload is huge. I did my last prac in a private school and they seem to have a strong focus on continued over page 3




English and Maths, whereas in the public system subjects are given are more equal weighting so there was quite a jump in workload from one to the other for me as a French teacher. JOURNAL: So, you’re three months into the job, how are the stress levels? ANTHEA: The workload is huge but I’m getting a lot of support at the site, from the Principal down, and I think I’ve found a place where I fit in really well. JOURNAL: Did you do any practicums in a country school? ANTHEA: No, I didn’t, and I think the sense of community out there is fantastic. Even though there’s such a small performing arts faculty, for example, the community gets really involved and it’s great. I really love it at Balak. Any time I’ve had to contact parents they are really supportive and take a lot of interest in their kids. JOURNAL: What’s your favourite subject to teach? ANTHEA: I love teaching English but French is definitely my favourite. After studying it for a few years at high school, I took it up again at Uni. I travelled in Europe after Year 12 and I realised that so many people could speak more than one language; I was a bit embarrassed by that to be honest. So, I decided that when I got back and went to Uni I was going to take French up again, because I had previously loved it. And now I’m teaching it and really enjoying the challenge. JOURNAL: When did you join the AEU? ANTHEA: I joined when I was a student member and before I even got the permanent job I was going to become a full member; I strongly believe in public education and that everyone should have access to the best education possible. Also, I think new educators should always be in the Union – you need support and you know you can rely on the Union to provide it if things get difficult. JOURNAL: What did you take from the New Educators Conference today? ANTHEA: I think the main thing I got out of today was the information about the Union. I had a reasonably good idea about how it works but it was great to learn about enterprise bargaining and the conditions unions have won for members over the years. I also picked up some ideas for my classroom, which was great. n

Safe to Teach, Safe to Learn AEU Vice President Dash Taylor Johnson discusses violence in the workplace. “Employees of DECS and TAFE, as well as students, volunteers and visitors have the right to a safe and healthy workplace free from violence and aggression.” (AEU Violence in Education Workplaces Policy Nov 2010) Sadly, violence is considered newsworthy with international, national and state conflict regularly featuring in bulletins. Our educational settings are not quarantined from this and, increasingly, members are being impacted. This may not be the all too familiar gun violence of the USA – SA Branch delegates successfully moved and were supported with a motion at the 2018 AEU Federal Conference opposing the arming of educators – but violence takes many forms. Physical violence is plain to see while verbal, emotional and psychological forms are more clandestine but just as dynamic. And then there are the perpetrators; violence stems from many sources. From pre-meditated and planned to uncontrolled outbursts, the safety of educators and the communities in which they work are under ongoing threat. Be it aggrieved parents/caregivers, battles for playground power, trauma-fuelled or unconscious actions as a corollary of a condition or disability, diagnosed or not, violence is violence. On Friday April 20, in the middle of a deserved break, over 100 members gathered to discuss violence in the workplace. Great frustration was expressed at the lack of an employer presence at the conference with key departmental officers not being available to be part of these critical discussions with their employees. However, a commitment was given to be part of a Violence Round Table with key stakeholders and conference participants providing clear feedback on prevention and support strategies when confronted with violence at work. Violence Action Plans, professional learning opportunities, the develop-

1 Michael Ats from Lieschke and Weatherill Lawyers addresses members at our Violence in School conference. ment of risk assessments, focussed resourcing and inclusion for all learners were common themes, themes that are prevalent in current AEU policy (Occupational Assault 1992, Integration of Students with Disabilities 1992, Students with Special Needs 1996, Workplace Bullying 2001, Violence in Education Workplaces 2010). The intent of AEU policy can not be questioned but language has become time bound to a degree; our WHS and Special Education committees have begun a review to reflect our 2018 learning environments. The 2017 Protective Practices document that outlines appropriate interactions with young people and children identifies differentiated risk assessments, mandated training such as NonViolent Crisis Intervention (NVCI) and the use of physical restraint when someone’s safety is clearly threatened (pg 17) and importantly that Staff are not expected to place their own safety at risk (pg 17) as supported by WHS legislation. Zero tolerance was a key ask and quite rightly so, but violence at the workplace is different to violence in the community, right? Wrong! SAPOL could not be clearer in identifying that violence is violence no matter where it occurs and should be reported. Schools and preschools have continued on page 22 3 15



Turning back the tide on a wave of job insecurity

“Knowing that I would be returning with a permanent position to a site I really loved upon the completion of my maternity leave allowed me to enjoy the rest of my pregnancy without the worry of financial stress in the future.” Miranda Andrews read my piece in the April AEU Journal on the ‘fear or favour’ culture within DECD; there’s little doubt that this is exacerbated by insecure work.

1 Miranda Andrews, teacher at The Briars Special Early Learning Centre and Levi.

Permanent work is a right worth fighting for. AEU Women’s Officer Tish Champion says ... While our work may not and should not define us, it certainly impacts on us emotionally, financially, socially and physically. Over the years, many studies have demonstrated that insecure work leads to a range of challenges: the threat of financial hardship, diminished social networks, low self-esteem, unpredictable pay, inferior rights and entitlements, limited or no access to paid leave, irregular or unpredictable working hours and tenure, lack of input on wages and conditions and more. All of this can result in anxiety, stress, insomnia and physical health problems. Many would have 16

Recent ACTU research has shown that only 60% of Australian workers are in permanent employment, with around four million working in insecure jobs. It is no secret that insecure work and under-employment creates vulnerability and increases inequality for so many Australians. What we rarely get a glimpse of is the hidden sacrifice and pain experienced by those affected by insecure work. Women and men who, on top of the obvious ramifications, are forced to park their dreams for a family or a home because of the insecurity of their job. Insecure work puts people’s lives indefinitely on hold. It’s difficult to plan for the future when you’re constantly waiting for a phone call with news of some short-term work. In a submission to an inquiry into insecure work in Australia in 2011, Beyond Blue argued that job insecurity is a serious risk factor for poor health. While flexible modes of employment may suit some people at certain times in their lives, very few individuals can tolerate insecurity and the subsequent consequences for prolonged periods.

Women bearing the brunt Women continue to experience financial disadvantage due to under-employment, casual employment, unpaid breaks in service to provide unpaid care for others, and their over-representation in the lower paid positions within the Department for Education (DfE). This leads to lower earnings and retirement

savings compared to men. For many, job security is the determining factor when considering buying a home or starting a family. Women worry that having a child without job security will disadvantage them on a number of fronts: will they get another contract? Will they have the flexibility needed to raise a child? Will they be disadvantaged or discriminated against when applying for positions? Will they lose contact with their networks? What will be the impact on their entitlements if they have a break in service? Will they lose leave entitlements they have previously accrued? And the list goes on. Permanency is the light at the end of the tunnel for so many, but particularly for women who know too well the hidden cost of precarious employment. The AEU are determined to hold the DfE accountable for high levels of unnecessary casual employment through the Position Tenure Review Panel. In the last 12 months we have successfully argued for the conversion to permanency of many members. Among them were a number of women who were literally holding their breath waiting for the security needed to start a family and move forward with their lives.

Are you eligible for conversion to permanency? Depending on your employment circumstances you may be eligible for conversion to permanency if you’ve been in the same contract position at the same site for more than two years. n

To find out more: call the AEU Information Unit on: 8172 6300 or go to our website5



FAQs Merit Selection

AEU Vice President Lara Golding says we need funding certainty in the early years.

Who can be the AEU rep on a panel? Leadership and ancillary panels: In the first instance, the AEU office will contact the Sub-branch Secretary of the site. If they are trained and willing to do the panel then they have first option. If they are not trained, can’t do it or want to give other members the chance, they are required to call for nominations from trained members at the site, hold a ballot to elect a rep, and let the AEU office know who it will be.

Teacher panels: The Sub-Branch Secretary is required to call for nominations from trained members in the site, hold a ballot to elect a rep and let the chairperson know who it will be.

What if only one member nominates to be on the panel? The Sub-branch Secretary is still required to hold a ballot to ensure the other sub-branch members endorse that one nomination.

Who can I talk to if I am worried about something regarding the panel? Merit selection panel processes are confidential. However, if you are on a panel as an AEU rep and you need advice regarding something that is happening within the panel process, you should call the AEU on: 8172 6300 for advice, without breaching confidentiality. n



AEU Women’s Conference

Saturday 16 June

8.45am – 3.00pm

A professional conference for women members with a focus on celebrating the power of women and girls to become agents of positive change in their communities and schools.

Friday 15 June 7.00 – 10.00pm Film night: ‘Made in Dagenham’ See Ad on page 2.

our preschools


I still remember my daughter’s first day at kindy. The nerves and excitement, and her brave face trying not to cry as I left. I also remember her last day, as she proudly presented me with her artworks and projects, and seeing her performing confidently with her class singing Christmas carols at the end year concert. She grew up immeasurably during that year, in no small part due to the excellent guidance of her kindy teachers and early childhood workers, and the high-quality play-based curriculum they provided. As it was for my daughter, that first year of public education is pivotal in any child’s life. According to the federal government’s own review of the US Perry Preschool study, every $1 spent on preschool saves the economy over $8 in social, health and institutional costs. There is also a wealth of other academic evidence showing the positive impact of preschool on the long-term educational and social outcomes of children. The Effective Provision of Preschool Studies from the UK and similar studies in the US have found high quality preschool had significant and long-term educational benefits, including: higher achievement at school, greater commitment to schooling and reduced absences, reduced special class placements, and increased high school graduation rates. Our preschool educators play an incredibly important role in setting children up for lifelong success, they work tirelessly with families, communities and support services and they are well deserving of respect! However, in spite of the evidence, our early childhood educators are facing challenges on many fronts including uncertainty in funding, devaluation of early childhood educational leadership, reduced non-instruction time and low levels of job security.

Preschool funding Every year AEU members have to fight for the extra three hours funding

per-week, per-child, from the federal government. It is unbelievable, given the importance of that first year, that the federal government refuses to provide a long-term commitment to funding 15 hours of universal access to preschool. We currently have an agreement from the federal Education minister until the end of next year. This is not good enough. We are preparing to step up the campaign again next year and want you all to join us.

Non-instruction time in preschools Teachers in school-based preschools are entitled to the same non-instruction time as the other primary teachers at the school. In comparison, preschool teachers in standalone sites are only entitled to ten percent non-instruction time, and in many cases educators are receiving even less. Sound confusing? It is! A preschool teacher should be entitled to the same non-instruction time, regardless of whether their preschool is based at a school or not.

Securing our jobs Regardless of location, early childhood educators have the lowest level of job security of all school sectors. In 2017, only 56% of the early childhood teaching workforce were permanent and fewer than 20% of early childhood workers were permanent. These are appalling statistics. The Department for Education (DfE) has recently informed the AEU that they are looking at staff contracts and seeking to convert some preschool staff to permanent. This is good news, but unless a large number of early childhood educators are converted to permanent, it won’t be enough. We must unite and stand in solidarity, in preschools, schools and TAFE, to give our students the best possible start to public education. What we need is increased and guaranteed funding. Despite the overwhelming evidence supporting our position, neither state nor federal government is going to provide this voluntarily. Through campaigning, we must demand Fair Funding Now – especially for our preschools. n 17


1 Members of the AEU Early Childhood Consultative Committee showing support for our Respect campaign.

Your voice in the union Get involved in your union! Nominations are being called for a number of AEU committees (see over page), including some of those listed here.


s part of its democratic structure, the AEU SA Branch has a number of member consultative committees that act as a forum for discussion on matters relating to stakeholders in each sector. Consultative committees make recommendations to AEU Branch Executive on a range of matters, including our enterprise bargaining claim and other issues affecting members in preschools and schools.

Members elected to AEU Consultative Committees in 2018 so far are:

SSO Consultative Committee Julie Andrzejczak Adelaide East EC Shirley Goff Long Steet PS Katrina Hanlin Pt Augusta West PS Pamela Liakos Napperby PS Matoula Potiris Marden SC Debby Shields Banksia Pk Intern. HS John Sofia Pt Pirie West PS Helen Whyte Long Street PS Sam Wittwer Kadina Memorial HS 18

Aboriginal Education Consultative Committee Michele Appleton Moonta AS Wendy Baldwin Para Hills EO Krystal Childs Parafield Gardens HS Becc Clark Flinders Park EO Cheryl Harris Pt Lincoln PS Clifford Walkington Woodville HS Sonya Rankine Central Yorke School

Contract and TRT Consultative Committee Josephine Buchhorn Richanda Tiley Marguerita Edwards Robyn Sambell Emily Halls Jacqueline Schulz Kirsten Ifould Grace Wilson

Early Childhood Consultative Committee David Coulter Darlington CC Mandy Dempsey Pt Augusta CC Kay Finney Para Hills B-7 School Lauren Griffin Neta Kranz CC Susan Hill Bains Rd Preschool Kaye Laredo Mannum College

Kendall Proud Edwardstown PS Barbro Stranz CS Employable Helen Vosvotekas Para Hills B-7 Amber Yepa Dernancourt Kindergarton

Special Education Consultative Committee Anne Creighton Arnold SERU Colin Blute Modbury SS David Brown Madison Park PS Nicholas Cousins Salisbury East Denise Le Maistre Christie Downs PS Jayanti Natarajan Whyalla SE Julie Thompson Monash PS

Status of Women Consultative Committee Wendy Baldwin Para Hills EO Becc Clark Flinders Park EO Carolyn Fine-Clementi M Oliphant B-12 Vanessa Fay ASMS Trish Gilbert Northfield PS Susan Langmead Henley HS Kendall Proud Mulga Street PS Nora Thomas IMS Helen Whyte Long Street PS



Australian Education Union | SA Branch


Nominations are called to fill vacancies on the following AEU Committees.

STANDING COMMITTEES: Finance: The Committee is chaired by the Treasurer and prepares the AEU budget and reviews expenditure on a quarterly basis. One male position for one year ending December 2018.

CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEES: Consultative Committees provide advice to Branch Executive on matters affecting their membership sector. All positions are for a one year term of office ending December 2018.

Contract and TRT – 1 position. Unemployed, Contract and TRT members.

Special Education – 2 positions. Teachers and School Services Officers involved in Special Education.

Leaders Consultative Committee – 7 positions. School leader members in all sectors of schooling.

Aboriginal Education – 2 positions. Indigenous members from all membership sectors and classifications.

Early Childhood – Up to 5 positions (a majority of whom shall be Children’s Services Act employees). Members working in Early Childhood Education. Closing Date: Nominations for these Committee vacancies must reach the Returning Officer, 163 Greenhill Road, Parkside 5063, no later than 5.00pm on Thursday 31 May 2018. A nomination form is available at: NominationForm and from the AEU. Nominations may be accompanied by a supporting statement of not more than 200 words.

Election Procedure: Ballots for contested positions will be conducted at Branch Council on Saturday 2 June 2018. David Smith, Returning Officer

TAFE: too

good to lose

19 June 2018

! y a D e f a T l a on i t a N e t a r b e Cel rium mpus At a C y it C e delaid A : t n e v SA E 0pm .0 2 – m p 0 .0 2 1 uts on: Stop TAFE C on June 19.

TAFE members in Support AEU volved by rs can get in e b m e m your m U E A f support fro o e g a ss e m emailing a : ub-branch to workplace/s u

aeusa.asn.a campaigns@ at you value il, tell us wh bers do. In your ema e work mem th d n a FE the next about TA r message in u yo sh li b u We’ll p website. and on our ne. AEU Journal mpaign onli TAFE Cuts ca p to S e th Join


FECampaign Twitter: @TA TAFE Cuts top ay Facebook: S toptafecuts.c .s p w to w S w a : d to n Go uts kit a Stop TAFE C r u yo ). t st e g la to stocks shirt (while TAFE Cuts te 2. t Ad on pag See SA Even

Tea Breaks Although tea breaks are not an Award provision, it is expected that schools, in terms of long-standing custom and practice, will make arrangements to provide SSOs the opportunity to have a cup of tea/coffee etc. Whilst it is emphasised that all school staff are still on duty during these times, the specific arrangements are to be determined at the local level depending on the particular circumstances of each school. Tea breaks are paid breaks and therefore staff are not required to make up the time. Essential school services such as switchboard and front office reception coverage must be maintained. n Source: DECS Circular 09/7523: Tassi Georgiadis Director, Workforce Management 4.8.09].

SSO Vacancies of 15 hours or less Vacancies of 15 hours or less per week must be offered to permanent part-time staff within the school in the first instance. If the hours cannot be allocated within the school, they are offered to permanent part-time staff in nearby schools for allocation on the basis of merit. SSOs seeking additional hours must complete the Additional Hour Register (AHR) VL207 at the school to be eligible. You may also submit the AHR form to schools nearby. Any amendments to the information provided or withdrawals of interest can be lodged at any time by submitting a new form. n Source: the Policy and Procedures – Recruitment and Selection of Ancillary Staff in Schools and Preschools.

For more information please call the AEU Information Unit or SSO Organiser Lisa Sigalla on 8172 6300.

AEU Information Unit Monday to Friday, 10:30am – 5:00pm

)8172 6300


M E M B E R I N FO RM AT ION resentatives? In recent updated Merit Selection training the use of independent support was highlighted.


Howard Spreadbury: Panellists have access to Merit training for this purpose, and the AEU offers individual support on a needs basis. AEU reps should contact the AEU should any issues arise and Equal Opportunity reps should contact the Ethical Conduct Unit.

Relief Teacher Shortages


Questions from the workplace AEU Principal Officers respond to questions from Branch Council delegates


ach term AEU Branch Council, the union’s peak decision-making body meets at the AEU office on Greenhill Road. 110 delegates from all around the state attend Council, some of whom are also involved in consultative and standing committees that meet in the lead up to Council. An important part of the Branch Council agenda, questions from delegates which have been submitted prior to the meeting, are answered by Principal Officers for the information of all delegates. Those questions and answers will form the basis of this regular column, “Questions from the Workplace”. At the April 7 Branch Council meeting a number of issues were raised by delegates, some of which appear here. As the Journal publication doesn’t coincide with Branch Council, there may be more recent developments on some issues since these responses were provided. Answers from AEU President, Howard Spreadbury and AEU Vice President, Dash Taylor Johnson


Howard Spreadbury: The AEU is supporting sub-branches where such incidents have occurred on a case by case basis. AEU Coordinator of Organisers, Andrew Gohl, reported on this at a previous Branch Council, describing how members at a site took action against violence at the site and the ways the AEU supported that action. With respect to long-term support, the AEU provides this through access to the AEU Information Unit and the provision of a template sub-branch motion regarding site procedures and Work Health and Safety in regard to site violence.


Dash Taylor Johnson: There will be a WHS conference focussed on Violence in Schools, at the AEU on Friday 20 April. The aim of this conference is to empower members to take action and assist through creating a Violence Action Plan. I will also raise this matter with Ian May, specifically in regard to changing the culture around education staff experiencing violence.

Violence in schools

Independent support for panellists

How are teachers and SSOs who have been injured physically or mentally by violence at the workplace being supported?

Can the Union promote the use of independent support for all panellists and in particular for AEU panellists and Governing Council rep-

Q 20


Is the AEU aware of the chronic shortage of Permanent Relief Teachers in country areas? What can be done to prevent quotas being eroded?


Howard Spreadbury: This is an ongoing issue that we are aware of, and it is matter of funding and resources. Work is being undertaken by the AEU Industrial team with regard to inclusion in enterprise bargaining and seeking other, more expedient, ways of addressing this chronic issue.


Dash Taylor Johnson: It is a work in progress. The AEU has written to the Department regarding this matter.

Year 7s in secondary schools


What does the AEU secretariat know about the incoming government’s proposal to move Year 7s into secondary sites? Further to that, what processes are being discussed in relation to this?


Howard Spreadbury: We have known for years that this is part of the Liberal’s agenda and the media has picked it up recently after Minister Gardner took up his position as Education Minister. The AEU’s position focuses on issues with curriculum, rather than physical placement, and the AEU Curriculum and Professional Development Management Committee is currently assessing such matters and related costs, classification changes for education staff, infrastructure, middle schooling and the potential impact on secondary schools. We believe the Department for Education (DfE) has not considered these points and we have requested a meeting with Minister Gardner and Premier Marshall to discuss this. The issue will also be discussed at an upcoming meeting with DfE CE, Rick Persse, on Tuesday 10 April. n


Union Training

Application Writing for Teaching Positions (STUDENTS) Thursday, 28 June

DAY 2: Wednesday, 27 June

TIME: 9:15am to 3.30pm each day

DETAILS: A 2-day course building the sub-branch and resolving workplace issues effectively through various decision-making structures and processes and developing a positive workplace culture. Participants will also apply the Agreement and the PAC procedures to their work situations. Participants are expected to attend both days. Participants should bring at least one other member with them, e.g. AEU PAC rep, new educators, women/ SSO contact, OHSW rep or WOC member.

e e m ncy • Rem mun s un e n t • S m a lle r cl as en era m tio n • Fair treat

e e m ncy • Rem mun ner e n t • S m a ll e r cl a ss nt e a tio n • F air treat m

ss ortunity • e

Reas e r si a t i o n r tr i • V zes • E q • F a i o rtu n d u alu u pp e o u r a l o sio n al j profes

• Remu ncy ional judgner

o r Reas a s tio n ir tre n t • iz e s • E q • F a p p o rt u l j ual o Va l u e o u r r o f e s sio n a p

uin • Equal opp e s

s • P e rm oad g our prof ane

AEU SA 2018 new series of workshops for TRTs

oad s • er man oa p r o f e s s P l j u d ge m io n a ds • m Per m a nency • Re

CONFERENCE: Saturday, 16 June AEU WOMEN’S CONFERENCE 2018 SATURDAY, 16 JUNE 8.45am – 3.00pm

GUEST SPEAKERS: Frances Bedford

Independent member for Florey

Clare Lindop

Retiring veteran jockey of 20 years

Olivia Brown

Federal AEU Women’s Officer


r p lo a d s • P e r m a g lo a r o f e s s i o n a l j u d R e ds • Per m anency •


7.00pm – 10.00pm

Film viewing: ‘Made in Dagenham’ + supper

Authorised by Leah York, AEU Branch Secretary, Australian Education Union | SA Branch, 163 Greenhill Road, Parkside SA 5063 © 2018

7.00pm – 10.00pm 8.45am – 3.00pm

A professional conference for women members with a focus on celebrating the power of women and girls to become agents of positive change in their communities and schools. A fantastic networking opportunity with both union and professional engagement. OPEN TO: AEU SA Women members.

COST: Conference and Catering fee $30. See Ad on page 2.

Application Writing for Preschool Positions Wednesday, 20 June

4.30pm – 6.30pm

DETAILS: Keeping up to date with current professional learning developments for dedicated relief teachers can come with challenges. In 2018, the AEU SA launch a new series of TRT specific workshops looking at industrial and professional matters for teachers who are choosing to work as casual relief teachers. OPEN TO: AEU TRT members and potential members. You may join the AEU to attend these sessions. COST: TRT members: $11 per workshop. Potential members: $66 per workshop. No travel support available.

Application Writing for Teaching Positions Monday, 9 July [Repeat]

FILM NIGHT: Friday, 15 June

Australian Education Union | SA Branch 8:>Events&Courses

Tuesday 06 November

Thursday, 21 June

AEU Women’s Conference

or email Tish Champion on:

4.30pm – 6.30pm

WORKSHOP 4: ‘Mindfulness for TRTs’

COST: AEU SA members: $22 per session

For further info or to register

Tuesday 14 August

WORKSHOP 3: ‘Keeping Yourself Safe’

OPEN TO: AEU student members only.

o k a n a b le w or u t n m e n t a l u e o rk ju d it y • R e a • V a b l e w o son gem ent •

lo n p ads • erma ad r o fe s s P l j u d ge u i s• Per m o n a y • Remm anenc

l n at a b l e w o r k ur it m e n ue o l u d y • R e at • V a l e w o r k gem so abl ent • n

lass size er c

Professional Development

o at n a b l e w o r k r ty m e n t l u e o u o ge m • R e a s o • Va e w o r k l nabl ent •


t • Sm men all

n a b l e wo r k aso atment • Val l

OPEN TO: All AEU school reps who have not attended AEU 2-day union education courses. Strongly recommended for newly elected workplace erepresentatives and Sub-branch Secretaries. R sn p• Feaicr t Re COST: Free. Relief,attravel trand accommodation support provided. io

4.30pm – 6.30pm

DETAILS: A 2-hour practical workshop to assist in applying for DfE local selection teaching positions. This workshop will provide information regarding the writing of your personal statement for teacher positions. This student/graduate focus workshop will place emphasis on navigating DfE processes.

n e e enc mun mu m e n t • y • R e er clas e S m all ner m a tio n • Fair treat

DAY 1: Tuesday, 26 June

r Reas e s a tio tr nt siz e s n • F a i r p p o rtu l • Va • E q u a l o o n a l u e o u r p r o f e s si

Workplace Reps Course 4: [Repeat]

4.30pm – 6.30pm

10.30am – 12.30pm

Thursday, 9 August [Repeat]

4.30pm – 6.30pm

Thursday, 6 September [Repeat]

4.30pm – 6.30pm

DETAILS: A 2-hour practical workshop to assist in applying for DfE local selection teaching positions. This workshop will provide information regarding the writing of your personal statement for teacher positions.

OPEN TO: AEU members and potential members. You may join the AEU to attend these sessions. COST: AEU SA Members – $22 per session and Potential Members – $66 per session.

4.30pm – 6.30pm

A 2-hour practical workshop to assist in applying for preschool positions including Director, Teacher and Early Childhood Worker positions. This workshop will provide information regarding the writing of your application and/or personal statement for positions. This will include particular focus on early childhood staff requirements and Early Years Framework examples. This workshop is a metropolitan based workshop due to state wide logistics. Please register your interest if you would like to be included in a Facebook Live stream in a country area. OPEN TO: AEU members and potential members. Or join the AEU to attend these sessions.

COST: AEU SA members: $22 per session. Potential members: $66 per session.

AEU SSO Conference Friday, 20 July

9.15am – 3.30pm

A one-day conference for SSOs. This day will include topics as selected by the SSO Consultative Committee. OPEN TO: AEU SA SSO members. COST: Free.

For further information on any events and courses, email Sam Lisle-Menzel at:

8: To register go to:

8:> events & courses




continued from page 15 3

Violence in schools

ED155s (being rebadged as an Injury Report form) while it is notification beyond the workplace that is important. Violence, intimidation and harassment are not tolerated in TAFE SA and their student conduct code clearly identifies this. But what about the Department for Education? Assaults and Threats of Violence Against Employees was the first Risk Review conducted by DECD in late 2016. In April 2017, they published nine strategies to reduce violence of which number 4, Establish and promote a zero tolerance approach to workplace violence features. None of the 100 + members at the conference were even aware that the risk review had been conducted let alone the existence of a zero tolerance stance. In this context, “promote” is the key word, as having a document embedded within your intranet or the Personal Safety and Conflict Awareness online PLINK course are simply not cutting it! As part of the Violence Round Table, this will be front and centre, but your sub-branch can act also. Members identified the need to meet in order to build common understandings and practice, to discuss violence action plans, to explore T&D options and know your rights. To put safety back in the forefront of our work, having a trained Health and Safety Rep is essential. n

Members share their thoughts with the AEU Journal JULIA D’AMICO - Teacher


he first ever AEU Violence in Schools Conference took place during the Term 1 school holidays, with over 100 members in attendance. The strong turn-out is a clear indication that safety at work isn’t a given and many members contributed their experiences during the course of the day. The AEU Journal caught up with some of those members to hear their thoughts.

KATHY BAKER - Teacher Ocean View B–12 College “I think we need to stop sweeping it under the carpet; it needs to be out there and discussed openly in the whole school community. It’s not just the responsibility of school leadership but of the whole staff, the parents and the students within the school. When violent incidents take place you see the effects on colleagues, not just at the time but over the long term. I’ve personally experienced various incidents but there is always someone else who has had a worse experience n than you.”

CHRIS BURDETT - Assist. Principal Para Vista Primary School

Join Union Aid Abroad APHEDA With over 40 training projects, working through 30 separate project partners in 15 countries, APHEDA assists dozens of communities in Southeast Asia, the Pacific, the Middle East, Southern Africa and the Caribbean. You can support their work by joining up at:


Use your QR app to “like us” on facebook. 22

“It’s important to do risk assessments but they are only useful if there is follow through to mitigate the risks that are identified. You can’t allow a high-risk activity or behaviour to continue just because there isn’t resourcing or staffing to resolve the issue. ED155s are always filled out at our site and they tend to get action, but when risk assessments are done in schools, nothing seems to change. If risk assessments are what we use to measure the severity of violence then they have to be supported. There are regular incidents of violence of varying levels in schools and with a lot of young staff in schools like ours, they can slowly become disillusioned about the system not supporting them; you start to wonder what that means down the track – are n they going to hang around?”

Modbury Special School “I think our school is doing a really good job with crisis intervention and behaviour management. Our teachers are really well supported and we obviously experience violence a lot. That said, we work through it quite well because we have a great WHS committee, which has a lot of power in supporting teachers and making change happen. We don’t spend too much time complaining about the issues and thinking nothing’s going to change; we go through the avenues we have to address the issues. We’ve had non-crisis intervention training and PBIS (Positive Behaviour Intervention Strategies) training which the SSOs have engaged in as well. We have a proactive approach to behaviour management – all students have a behaviour plan and it provides teachers with a plan to follow relating to individual students. Our leadership team prioritises applying for RAP funding so we have extra support for students with violent behaviours. And we experience this kind of thing every day, and some of these students are adult size. We have good strategies to manage and we have good support structures among staff. We do lots of debriefing and leadership will relieve staff if they need to take a break as the result of an incident.” n

ANN FISHER - TRT “We as teachers need to keep our children safe, and safe children require safe sites. Every site needs to have a behaviour management plan in place; it needs to protect the children that we have duty of care for. And staff need safe workplaces too. Every day of the week there would be a teacher in a worksite who has either been physically injured or suffered mental distress. The most important thing to me is the children and keeping them safe. We all need to do that and our employer needs to look after our wellbeing.” n



Australian Education Union

Branch Council Meeting


Casual Vacancy Election

AEU – South Australian Branch Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009 Nominations are called for:

General Division

• Branch Executive Officer (Female) (1)

See SA Branch rule 54(6) which provides that “Any casual or extraordinary vacancy in the position of Branch Executive Officer shall be held by a person of the same gender as the person who is being replaced.”


Must be in writing and comply with the registered rules of the of the Union, may be made at any time from 15 May 2018. They must reach the Returning Officer via the lodgement method(s) stipulated below not later than 12:00pm (ACST) on 29 May 2018. Nomination forms are available on request. Alternatively, additional forms are available from the Returning Officer or the branch office of the Union.

Saturday, 2 June Saturday, 25 August Saturday, 17 November

TAFE Divisional Council Meeting Friday, 1 June Friday, 24 August Friday, 16 November

AEU Information Unit Monday to Friday, 10:30am – 5:00pm

)8172 6300

How to Lodge Nominations

Nominations must be lodged via the following method(s):

By Post: Returning Officer, Australian Electoral Commission, GPO Box 9867, ADELAIDE SA 5001 By Hand: Australian Electoral Commission, Level 9, 1 King William Street, ADELAIDE SA 5000. By Fax: 02 6293 7638

By Email: A properly completed nomination form including all necessary signatures and attachments may be scanned and submitted as a pdf file to

PLEASE NOTE: Emails to the AEC inbox that appear to be spam may be blocked. It is the responsibility of senders to ensure that their email reaches the AEC before the deadline for nominations. In order to be able to be received by the AEC, emails (including attachments) should be no greater than 6 MB in size. You may call 08 8237 6533 to check. Voting Period The ballot, if required, will open on 14 June 2018 and close at 10:00am (ACST) on 5 July 2018. Other Information Changed Address? Advise the Union now.

Note: A copy of the AEC’s election report can be obtained from the Union or from the Returning Officer after the completion of the election. Rexona Calvert Returning Officer

15 May 2018 Telephone: 08 8237 6533

PUBLIC EDUCATION Email: to order your RESPECT bumper stickers.

Enquire now

(08) 8285 6900


Created by teachers, for teachers. We cover the lives of over 320,000 teachers, education staff and their families. As the largest industry-based health fund, we exist for our members.

For your free, side-by-side comparison, and our latest offers, visit or call 1300 764 288 Eligibility criteria and conditions apply. Teachers Federation Health Ltd ABN 86 097 030 414 trading as Teachers Health. A Registered Private Health Insurer. THF-AEU/SA-05/18


Fair Funding Now! Every child deserves a fully funded public education. Join 1 in June: Build strength at your workplace. Job Insecurity: Tu...


Fair Funding Now! Every child deserves a fully funded public education. Join 1 in June: Build strength at your workplace. Job Insecurity: Tu...