Wagga Wagga director takes the lead in addressing teacher workloads

The Director of Schools for the Wagga Wagga Diocese, Mark MacLean, has announced that full time teachers will be provided with an additional one day release from class and part time teachers an additional half day.

This is an interim measure for 2019 in recognition of the increased work demands facing teachers in diocesan schools.

In Term 2 the CEDWW conducted a survey about teachers workloads and from the responses two key themes emerged: time and support.

  • Time required to manage the demands of programming requirements, assessments, interviews, professional learning and the completion of online compliance modules.
  • Support to assist students with significant behavioural needs.

The director has stressed that it is the teachers’ time and although the timing of the release is in consultation with the principal it can be taken as a full day or two half days, must be taken this year and can be taken away from the workplace.

The director has stated that this is an interim measure and he has given his assurance that the survey responses will continue to be evaluated in order to determine the best way to manage workload pressures in a more sustainable way.

This announcement augers well for the negotiations around the new enterprise agreement (EA) for Catholic systemic schools and supports the Union’s concerns regarding teachers’ work.

Transition and Pathway Specialist program

The Wagga Wagga Diocese is to be congratulated on this initiative which has drawn positive attention from other NSW dioceses.

Representatives from the other dioceses have visited Wagga diocesan schools in the first weeks of Term 3 to gain first hand experience in the operation of the program.

At August Council, the Riverina Sub Branch recognised the value of the program and supported the inclusion of the position of Transition and Pathways Specialists in the current EA claim.

Diversity in educational leadership

Kelly Humphrey, previously an Education Officer in the CEDWW Office and a recipient of the Brother Taylor Fellowship, has identified the need for more diverse school leaders.

Her report highlights the importance of mentoring and networking opportunities to inspire confidence and develop skills in school leaders.

The CEDWW has initiated 'Dual Principalships' in some of their Primary Schools. This model employs two full time principals.

Members support the idea of diverse models of school leadership but seek assurance that all school will continue to be appropriately resourced and enhanced, with the funding model for individual schools being applied in a transparent and fair manner.