New voice breaking through the noise

My history background got me into the union movement.

A passion for history has guided new IEU Organiser Lubna Haddad’s career choices from a young age.

“I thought about being a journalist, a lawyer and a psychologist, but in the end history kept drawing me back,” Lubna said.

After studying history, legal studies and politics at university Lubna started a career as a history teacher in the public system, before moving to All Saints Catholic Senior College, Casula, then All Saints Greek Orthodox Grammar School, Belmore and finally The McDonald College at North Strathfield, where she stayed for 10 years, becoming the Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE) department head.

Lubna has also done postgraduate study in educational leadership.

“I loved teaching history, and seeing the kids faces light up when they 'got' something.

“If they started to fall in love with the subject I love and even decided to become history teachers themselves, I found that really rewarding.”

For almost her entire stint at The McDonald College, Lubna was the IEU Rep.

“I’ve always joined the union, even when I worked at Woolies putting myself through university. My history background got me into the union movement.

“Studying the labour movement and human rights – it made sense to me. The collective is very important.”

Lubna said a job at the IEU was the perfect fit.

“I’ve always had two career goals. If I stayed in the classroom it was to be involved in curriculum and teacher training. If I moved out of the classroom it was to be involved in activism and advocacy.

“The IEU offered me an opportunity to stay connected to education while taking part in advocacy, social justice and teacher welfare issues.”

Lubna said her first six months would be a learning experience, taking in all the different aspects of the Union’s work.

Her ultimate aim is to make sure teachers’ welfare is at the forefront, teachers’ rights are upheld, their conditions improved and they are ‘listened to’.

“There’s too much noise around teaching from politics and new directives and the nitty gritty of what really matters in teaching is getting lost.

“I’d like to be a voice that cuts through all the noise and finds out what can be done to make teachers’ lives better.”