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Our country needs good teachers. I am not going to be one of them

MJ: I would be interested in hearing about the rates of teachers leaving after five years. We make a big deal about early career teachers leaving within the first five years, but what about those who stuck it out and then made the decision to leave after six, eight or even 15 years? I mean, let’s face it, there is no point of “phew, I made it to five years, I now have it all”. There are some amazing teachers out there who are not getting the professional support or are inundated with “compliance” requirements and have made it past the magic five years, who are also leaving and are experiencing dissatisfaction with their career.

In my opinion, the entire profession and system of education needs to be overhauled, and soon. At the rate we are going, there won’t be many teachers left in the years to come.

Stephanie: I think she could have had a very different outcome if she did a different course. An eight week crash course in teaching before commencing employment? That’s insane!

David: I have taken this year off after 13 years in the classroom saying it’ll get better. I’m in quandary as to whether I want to go back or not!

Sarah: I think many have the false idea that being a teacher is a great profession when facing motherhood – holidays, school hours and the farce that if anyone can parent a child then surely anyone can teach them. Teaching is a tough profession and not really understood until you are teaching and each age group has its own set of challenges, none is any easier.

Megan: It’s so sad. Most of us teachers love the teaching part – the students, the subject, the relationships. It’s all the other stuff we’re made to do – jumping through hoops like well trained dogs – that does nothing to improve what we do in the classroom and outweighs the good things about the profession. I understand why so many teachers leave the profession. It’s time the government and schools themselves stopped talking about teacher burn out and disillusionment, and act on something that addresses the issues that are repeatedly discussed.

Teresa: Yep, after 20+ years of loving the job I too am bored and lacking motivation. I probably spend 45% of my time now on admin. Good luck to this amazing authentic learning for our 21st century education system!

Maggie: Very interesting and honest. It’s tough but I still think it’s the best job ever. Teachers seem to unanimously believe the mounting administration is ridiculous. How many more dedicated teachers will we lose over bureaucracy before policy makers listen?

Amanda: The view in the 60s/70s was on efficiency, this has been sidelined for the new mantra of software edu-business box ticking accountability. The unnecessary workload imposed today is not reaping any real progress, in fact Australian education standards are slipping relative to similar nations. The digital age was going to increase our efficiency and therefore our educational outcomes, the opposite has happened. What a waste of time and debt for those young teachers who have left the profession (unis don’t care as they still get their funding regardless). Teachers that are consumed timewise by their job struggle to bring fresh ideas or motivation to the classroom. It’s about time people stood up on this issue and called for a workplace review and culled those tasks/requirements that are non-core or useful to teaching.

Judith: And I don’t need more pay (although that would be nice of course) I just want my evenings and weekends back!

IEU calls for protected action

Debbie: NSW, ACT we need to stand united. We won’t let the CEC water down our rights!

Simon: Thank you IEU for making sure the finer print doesn’t go unnoticed, and that our employers often forget their purpose: the employees.

Damien: CCER needs to keep in mind that we’re not America . . . yet. Workers still have rights in this country, and they’d better not forget it.

Lubna: Collectivism right now is fundamental. Please encourage all to join otherwise employers will continue to divide and play on the few.

Natalie: Best they check the social justice teachings of the Catholic church then since they seem to be in breach of a principle or two.

Mary-Jean: Perhaps if the CCER felt that holding up pay rises was a problem, they could have negotiated BEFORE the award finished last year, as the Union tried to do.

Primary school’s teachers quit en masse over ‘impossibly high workload’

Simon: It seems in many workplaces that “the work” takes precedence over those charged with conducting it. The irony of a Catholic school leader who has no pastoral care toward its staff seems lost on some employers.

Marcus: Good on them, you cannot run schools without teachers! Unhappy workplaces equal unproductive ones!

Carole: Wow, how bad must it get to come to this? I hope they can sort something out soon. It took our cricketers a long time, here’s hoping they can get rid of this work-a-holic principal!

Catholic teachers set to strike

Euge: Catholic teachers teaching about Catholic social teachings and working for a more just world. Tony Farley and CCER want to remove access to justice for those very same teachers. Appalling. When will the Bishops pull CCER into line for behaving in a way that contradicts Catholic values?

Teresa: Farley ‘WE’ are the union and WE say WE want the right to an arbitrator.

Marcus: do we need to have rolling strikes to make our position clear and be taken seriously?

Teachers eye action after talks stall

Debbie: The entire agreement is flawed, from lack of choices in super, clerical indicative duties that are taught at diploma level being classified as Certificate II, the fact it was voted on once under strict AEC rules than not again after it was rejected (yes, not everyone has email access, think of cleaners, groundsmen, some of the clerical staff) as well as other issues ....

Simon: We had two reps from CCER at our school today. They could not answer:1. Why Qld and Vic have guaranteed arbitration but NSW teachers don’t.2. If my principal wants to use my RFF times as meeting and DIRECTED PD time, and he/she doesn’t give permission to go to arbitration, do I foot my own legal bill?3. How was the conflict in Canberra resolved after conciliation failed?4. Where is the updated agreement for us to look at? What has been amended since December 2016? 5. Why is CCER electing to send their own reps to school (their response was that Wagga CSO were understaffed. I had to laugh at this, as it is the first time EVER the Wagga CSO has been referred to as being “understaffed”).

We need to change the way we select future teachers

Sharlene: Psychometric testing used to be standard to enter teacher training courses apparently. I personally think they’d be a good idea to give students a better idea of their attributes and to see if they have the adaptability, resilience, and resourcefulness (for example) needed to be a teacher in today’s ever changing schools. I agree, the workloads seem high (I’m a preservice teacher so can only go off what I’ve seen) but believe we can/must do better at both ends of the spectrum.

‘We do not have enough computers’: Naplan online criticised

Rikky: Hard to imagine slow-as-snails two-finger-typing year 3's. Do they have all day for each test paper?

James: This is 3 to 5 years away at the earliest. NAPLAN online readiness testing is one thing and a condition of government funding, however, I would be very surprised if this happens next year.

Secret Teacher: multi-academy trusts want machines not mentors

Michael: Reading from the script is the pedagogical practice called Direct Instruction. I’ve seen it in primary school for literacy lessons. In High School the closest thing I've seen to it is the reading of NAPLAN instructions.

Kris: 100% differentiation is a foreign word for some and if there is four classes at some schools they do exactly the same thing.

Peter: Teachers are just puppets these days. If they show initiative they are demonised.

Riverina Sub Branch standing up for your rights!

David: Nothing Christian about Catholic Education Offices unfortunately. You'd expect they would be a shining example to other employers about how to treat their employees with respect and gratitude, but unfortunately they're just another big business, as ruthless as any other.