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Vol. 11 No. 1

In this edition


August 2012

i I B Z

The newsletter for ELICOS, International College and Business College sector

Collective Bargaining Updates Embassy College Members at Embassy College Brisbane and Surfers Paradise are now amongst the highest paid ELICOS teachers in Queensland, with successful negotiation of the colleges’ first collective agreements. IEUA-QNT members at the two campuses have worked together to secure pay increases on top of the full Award of 5.5% in 2012 and 2.5% in 2013.

• • • • •

Collective Bargaining Updates

Casual staff members at the college teaching IELTS or EAP classes have also secured an hours payment for correction. This payment recognises the additional workload required to teach these subjects.

Minimum Wage Increase

The agreement also allows for a Consultative Committee made up of staff and management representatives to get together and give feedback regarding the continuous improvement of Embassy programs and student outcomes.

ELICOS Member Training

Another achievement of Embassy College members is 9 weeks paid paternity leave at the full teacher’s rate for the primary care giver of the child and 5 days paid parental leave for the secondary care give. This is the highest level of paid parental leave for any ELICOS college in Queensland.

EIN Meeting

John Paul International College

ACTU Insecure Work Inquiry

Members at John Paul International College (JPIC) have commenced negotiations to be included in the main school’s collective agreement. Being included in this agreement will mean that teachers at the College will be entitled to receive all relevant conditions that other employees at John Paul College are currently enjoying.

Member Profile: Larry Crouch, Metro College

Members at JPIC have asked for salary increases of 5% per annum for the next three years, as well as enhanced superannuation and long service leave entitlements. The collective bargaining process has thus far been very positive and members look forward to reaching a fair agreement with their employer for improved wages and conditions.

NAVITAS Negotiations at NAVITAS College have been finalised with members and management working together to achieve a wages solution given the current economic climate. Members agreed to a one year agreement that included a 3 per cent pay increase across the year. They will begin negotiations with management again next year.

Members Paola Carino, Catherine Duck and Judith White learnt about bargaining issues at a recent EIN meeting. See page three for the full story.

Shafston International College Negotiations for a replacement collective agreement at Shafston International College continue to progress slowly as members await a response from their employer ion several employee claims. Earlier in the year members at Shafston were forced to apply for a Majority Support Determination through Fair Work Australia to compel their employer to commence the negotiation process after a continued refusal to meet with staff. In a positive move, the College has indicated they will develop agreed policies on how to handle student complaints and the distribution of hours for casual staff. Members now look forward to responses from their employer on items such as wage increases and paid marking and preparation time.

Browns Members at the two campuses of Browns English Language College in Brisbane and on the Gold Coast have recommenced the collective bargaining process at their college after previously halting the process claiming it was too expensive and time consuming. Representatives from the two campuses have met with management to discuss their wages and conditions. Members are hoping for a sign of goodwill from management through an interim pay increase. ■

If you would like to meet your organiser offsite to discuss your wages and conditions, please contact our union on (07) 3839 7020 or send us an email at

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Minimum Wage Increase Fair Work Australia has implemented minimum wage increases for employees in the ELICOS sector; however, this amount still falls short of wage rates being achieved under Collective Agreements. The increase resulted in a wage rise for all employees in ELICOS colleges under the Educational Services (Post Secondary Education) Award.

ELICOS Minimum Wage Rates (as of 1 July 2012) Full Time Wages

While this increase is significant, minimum wage rates continue to undervalue the important work performed by teachers in the ELICOS sector. Employees working collectively within our union are attaining much better conditions. Efforts made by teachers who join together with our union to negotiate workplace improvements result in drastic differences between the ELICOS award rate and negotiated wages in the ELICOS sector. The only way that employees can improve on the award wages and conditions is to negotiate a Collective Agreement along with their colleagues. Collective Agreements are negotiated to improve wages and conditions for all staff at your college covering such issues as hours of duty or professional development; none of these are covered in the award. By working as a workforce collective alongside your union, improvements to wages and conditions can be achieved for staff at your workplace. If you would like to know more about how this change impacts upon you, please email Nick Holliday at

Casual Daily Rate


New Rate


New Rate

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

$41 417.75 $41,969.81 $42,799.61







$43,637.72 $45,402.76





$46,579.42 $47,650.70 $48,827.42 $50,009.66





8 9 10 11 12

$233.85 $239.51

$51,536.00 $52,956.96 $54,211.34

$246.82 $253.63 $259.63

ELICOS Member Training ELICOS Members are invited to attend important member training to learn practical skills and knowledge and collectively address issues within their colleges. The next member training seminar will be held in November at our union office. Members will learn about the emerging industrial relations environment, workplace organising strategies, networking, dispute resolution procedures and interpreting employment conditions. IEUA-QNT Growth Team Lead Organiser Nick Holliday said these training sessions are key opportunities for members to build their skills. “It is vital that members are equipped with practical workplace organising skills and knowledge of industrial regulations so that they can work on issues and improve wages and conditions in their colleges,” he said.

RTO Network Meeting

What: RTO Network Meeting Where: IEUA-QNT, 346 Turbot St, Spring Hill When: 4:30pm, 27 September, 2012

This training session will focus on how to get colleges in a position to engage with employers about pay and conditions. It will also be a great opportunity to network with other teachers and discuss key industry issues. By attending the session you will gain an understanding of the process behind collective bargaining and find out how to approach your colleagues about getting involved with our union. Our union officers will also be able to answer any questions you may have about your rights and conditions.

Another important aspect of the training is to build strength and solidarity amongst members by examining how we as a union operate while providing members with an opportunity to learn ‘hands-on’ organising skills. Training attracts a diverse cross section of members and helps build the ELICOS Industry Network.

ELICOS members Vernon Spain, James Lloyd and Dennis J Driver with IEUA-QNT Growth Team Organisers Aaron Watson and Caryl Davies at recent member training.

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For further information on our member training seminar please contact Nick Holliday on 3839 7020 or at ■■ Resources for ELICOS members can also be found on our website at


Why You Should Attend an EIN Meeting members and the solutions and actions that we’ve found effective. As the majority of English Language Colleges are now relatively small, we find that staff can feel quite isolated. That’s why many of our members find these event help them connect with others in the industry and to find out about positive changes being made. Last year a key issue discussed was the decline in student numbers due to the strong Aussie dollar and changes in the government’s visa regulations. This has affected many members’ job security and confidence in the industry. We also discussed the success we’ve had in a number of schools such as Embassy CES and Navitas by negotiating collective agreements that ensure better job security and pay. Growth Organiser Pauline Elphinstone with ELICOS members David Wicks and Paul Knight at a recent EIN meeting.

The next Elicos Industry Network (EIN) meeting is just around the corner and will be held 26 September, at Café Mondial in Albert Street, Brisbane. Late last year we held our most recent EIN for which we had quite an impressive turnout, with members from 6 or more colleges within the Brisbane area. It was a great opportunity for attending members to meet the IEUA-QNT team and discuss the issues that are affecting various

Members who attended the EIN meeting understood that in the current employment climate, it is essential to take an active involvement in shaping your career future. The most effective way to do this is for members and their colleagues to get together and have a say in their working conditions and wages through collective bargaining. All members and their colleagues are strongly encouraged to attend the next EIN meeting. ■■ Join us on Wednesday 26 September at 4:15pm to discuss the future of your changing industry.

ACTU Insecure Work Inquiry Judith White and Arun Warszawski from Browns Language College spoke at the inquiry

Experienced teacher Judith said observing the practices of the ESL industry had been a sobering experience. “Schools in the ESL industry appear to have little interest in staff development and improvement of their standards - experienced teachers are simply not valued,” she said. The Inquiry was commissioned by the ACTU to examine the impact of insecure jobs on the workplace and the community. In excess of 500 submissions were heard, resulting in a report that contains key recommendations to improve the issue of insecure work.

Report Recommendations Job insecurity is now causing more stress than cost of living pressures, with 40 per cent of Australians employed in insecure work such as casual work, fixed term work and contracting. IEUA-QNT ELICOS members provided important imput into a recent national inquiry into how insecure work arrangements have affected employees’ personal and professional lives. Judith White and Arun Warszawski from Browns Language College were amongst numerous Queensland workers who made submissions to the Independent Inquiry insecure Work Hearing held in February. As an ESL teacher, Arun told the Inquiry that the combination of casual short term contracts and no poor conditions meant that taking leave was not only financially risky, but due to his casual employment, there was a risk of losing his job. “As a young teacher the possibility of embarking upon an ESL career is simply not feasible if I am to aim for a minimally comfortable family life in Australia,” he said.

»» Strengthen the National Employment Standards to cover all employees including casuals; »» Allow all workers to apply for flexible work arrangements; »» Provide all workers starting new jobs with detailed statements that include the award/agreement covering them, their contractual status, their classification and applicable rates of pay and leave entitlements; »» Give workers the right to refuse overtime »» Introduce minimum hours for part time and casual engagements; »» Give workers an improved right to consultation; »» Implement a portable long service scheme for industries with poor job security; »» Include a secure work principle into Modern Awards to ensure that continuing employment is the norm; »» Remove restrictions to the bargaining system to improve employee conditions; and »» Ensure access to unfair dismissal remedies where employers utilise limited term employment to avoid their obligations. ■■ For more information or to view the full report visit

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iZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QBiZ QB Why is professional recognition of business trainers so important?


Good question, and one that many trainers struggle with. I have observed some administrators in schools consider trainers to be a “necessary evil” and do not treat them trainers with the same professional regard as other staff. I have many qualifications including a Diploma in Business (Frontline), a Diploma in Professional Counselling, Degree in Psychology, an Advanced Diploma in Management, a Certificate IV in Retail Operations and Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. Along with much informal education I have a depth of knowledge and experiences that I draw upon in my role as a trainer. And yet, an administration manager once said to me, “You are just a trainer”. Business trainers, in my opinion, should be better recognised as professionals.

What advice would you give to beginning trainers?

Larry Crouch Metro College, Stones Corner

How long have you worked in business colleges and at Metro College?

Before accepting a role look at how well resourced the organisation is and what ongoing professional development they can offer. A trainer needs to maintain currency and compliance.

What would you say to a colleague who is not a member of our union?

I would definitely encourage colleagues to be a member of our union. As a worker, you will always face many risks in the workplace.

I have worked in various business colleges since 2000, and I’ve been with Metro since August 2009, with a break in 2011 when I visited Brazil.

When this happens, I want to be part of an organisation that represents the voice of many, and will stand behind me in times of workplace conflict.

When did you join our union and what made you want to become a member?

Many workplace problems occur because employees do not have unity and a fair solution is difficult to negotiate alone.

What have you seen achieved in your workplace by members collectively coming together?


I joined when Pauline, Growth Organiser at our union, visited the workplace early in 2012. I had no hesitation in joining as I believe in the collective strength in being part of a union. Being a member of our union means I have a stronger voice should conflict occur in the workplace.

I have seen no significant changes but I do feel more secure having our union to support me with any issues. Our union has expert knowledge when it comes to industrial relations; they have more knowledge than I could ever accumulate.

What do you enjoy most about being a business trainer?

I enjoy enabling students to truly understand the principles of business management without losing sight of why a business exists. Managing staff and a business has responsibilities with serious consequences if the management exposes the business to risks. Not only occupational health and safety but the factors such as environmental concerns, evolving technology, legislative changes, and financial issues.

What are some of the challenges you face working in the sector?

Changes in legislation are the constant challenge, when the rules around overseas students visas changed, many schools lost 75% of their students to other overseas schools and colleges and are no longer operating. Also, many students whose second language is English struggle to understand the intricacies of business English. Last year I lived in Rio de Janeiro for 10 months. I taught Business English over there and while many of my students could speak conversational English, they needed education on the “Language of Business in English”. This is how I could help them as I can speak Brazilian Portuguese.

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To join IEUA-QNT, download a membership form from our website or call

FREECALL 1800 177 938 ISSN 1446-8964 QBiZ was prepared by Elise Cuthbertson, Nick Holliday, Caryl Davies, Aaron Watson and Pauline Elphinstone Editor: Mr Terry Burke, Secretary IEUA-QNT PO BOX 418, FORTITUDE VALLEY QLD 4006 PH: (07) 3839 7020 FX: (07) 3839 7021 Email: Website: ABN : 74 662 601 045


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