Negotiations will soon start for a new Goodstart agreement. The Goodstart agreement is a national agreement covering all 600 plus services across Australia and is negotiated with three unions: the Australian Education Union, United Voice and the IEU.
The current agreement expired in February and all parties agreed to delay negotiations until the later half of the year.
In the past few years, Goodstart has made a commitment to the employment of teachers and has offered many scholarships to staff undertaking university studies. They employ over 250 teachers in their services in NSW.
IEU Organisers have attended more than 122 meetings in all Goodstart centres in NSW. We will be talking to teachers about the importance of being a member of your professional education union. These meetings have been facilitated by Goodstart and are held in conjunction with the United Voice. Goodstart has agreed to pay staff for up to 40 minutes of attendance time (20 minutes for each union).
KU Children’s Services restructures
A number of KU centres will undergo significant restructure in the next 12 months.
KU has been reviewing their services in the light of changes to the early childhood sector. As a result, a number of KU preschools will transition over to a long day care model.
KU believes this will enable them to better respond to the changing needs of local families, ensure service viability and retain their current staff.
For the preschools affected this will mean moving from a 40 week year to a 48 week year and opening at least eight hours a day.
Staff currently employed will either be redeployed to another preschool or move to long day care conditions at their current service.
Staff have been requested to submit an expression of interest in whether they would like to be employed in the restructured service, be redeployed or seek redundancy.
While staff will get a higher rate of pay if they move to long day care there will be substantial changes to their conditions, working 48 weeks per year with the possibility of more contact time with children. Currently for preschool teachers it is capped at 30 hours per week.
If neither of these options is suitable for staff, then KU will consider a redundancy payment.
The IEU has had discussions with KU about how changes might be mitigated for staff and we will be seeking a meeting in the near future to discuss this further. The Union will represent any members affected by this change in their individual meetings with KU.
The current KU agreement has expired and we will commence negotiating a new agreement in September. This transition and the affect on staff employment conditions will be part of the Union’s log of claims.
Early childhood teacher accreditation
From 2016 all early childhood teachers will need to be accredited with BOSTES.
BOSTES will shortly be contacting all early childhood teachers and advising them how accreditation will work. The IEU understands early childhood teachers who are employed between 1 January 2016 and 1 October 2016, including those teachers who are on leave, will be deemed at Proficient level as of 1 January.
Teachers deemed to be Proficient will have to maintain their accreditation through registered professional development. The Union provides high quality registered PD free to members.
Teachers who are employed after 1 October 2016 will be provisionally accredited and will then have to demonstrate how they meet the Standards over the next three years.
This process is currently being developed by BOSTES and the working party. The IEU is a key stakeholder in this process and has lobbied to ensure the experience and expertise of early childhood teachers will be recognised.
The Union will hold a series of information sessions around NSW in Term 4 and Term 1 2016 to fully inform members of the process and requirements for early childhood teacher accreditation.
The IEU provides a free Pedagogy in the Pub (PIP) courses on teacher accreditation. To find them visit www.ieu.asn.au.