About 500 members of the IEU and the NSW Teachers Federation rallied on a full-day stop work, bringing the local community’s attention to the education crisis.

The rally commenced at Dubbo RSL for an Acknowledgement of Country by NSW Teachers Federation member Dimiti Trudgett, who linked her speech with the NAIDOC Week theme of “Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!”

The IEU Rep at St John’s College Dubbo and Central West Sub Branch President Louise Hughes spoke about unsustainable workloads and the five key elements of the IEU’s claim.

The livestream of the Sydney rally was enthusiastically received, followed by a march through central Dubbo to the band rotunda for more speakers. The NSW Teachers Federation rep at Dubbo College Delroy, Braydon Holland, spoke of 2000 lessons not taught in Terms 1 and 2 owing to teacher shortages. The record at his school for minimal supervision, he said, was 150 students to just one teacher.

The march proceeded to the office of NSW Nationals MP Dugald Saunders, the member for Dubbo, for a rousing version of Solidarity Forever.

The size of the crowd was a real credit to members and reps in the central-west region, and it was great to be among members from both unions as they shared their stories and struggles with one another.

Ann-Maree McEwan