October 31, 2019
Catholic school teachers have voted to take industrial action next week at 195 schools across Queensland – including two in the South Burnett – unless a meeting on Wednesday resolves the dispute.
Independent Education Union of Australia (Qld & NT) Branch Secretary Terry Burke said the protected action had been endorsed by 90 per cent of members who voted.
In the Wide Bay region, 10 Catholic schools – including St Mary’s Catholic College in Kingaroy and St Patrick’s Primary School in Nanango – are authorised to take industrial action from November 7.
The union says the move follows the failure of employers to address concerns regarding workload, insecure work and wage parity with the State School sector.
As a result, work bans will begin from Thursday, November 7, in the authorised schools.
The work bans will take the form of:
- Banning attendance at any meeting of staff (except meetings regarding student welfare, and staff and student safety)
- Banning duties during scheduled meal breaks
- Banning supervision lessons or cover periods
- Banning playground/transport supervision (with the exception of real safety risks for students)
- Banning employer requests for data collection or analysis
The union is seeking:
- Real measures to address the workload faced by teachers and the impact of insecure, contract-based work for teachers and support staff
- To maintain the 30-year wage parity with State sector through the provision of a $1250 one-off payment to all school staff.
Mr Burke said the industrial action was an absolute last resort for employees.
He said negotiations had been ongoing since March.
“Queensland Catholic employers have the opportunity to resolve these matters at a meeting next Wednesday, November 6, and prevent any protected action from taking place,” Mr Burke said.