A strike by Queensland teachers later this month looks to have been averted with the Teachers Union agreeing in-principle to a new pay deal.
Teachers had been threatening to walk off the job in the first week of the third term if the current pay offer wasn’t increased.
The Queensland Teachers Union had been demanding a 4.5 per cent increase plus changes to the classification system for teachers.
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Under the new deal, teachers have been offered a 2.5 per cent increase each year for the next three years, plus a one-off bonus of $1250.
Teachers who take on positions in rural or remote areas of the State will also be given a one-off bonus of $1000.
A number of conditions have also been improved including boosting the amount of non-contact time for primary and special school teachers.
The classification and progression process for Senior Teachers and Experienced Senior Teachers is also being simplified and enhanced while there will also be a new structure for principals and deputy principals.
Education Minister Grace Grace says it was a good outcome.
“It’s a very good deal that we’ve been able to strike with the QTU who will now obviously put the offer formally to their members to vote upon,” Ms Grace said.
“By the end of this agreement, our top teachers will be earning $110,500 per year. In addition, they can also apply to be recognised as Highly Accomplished Teacher or Lead Teacher, with salaries for these classifications rising to over $117,000 and $128,000 respectively from July 2021.
“On top of this, the new classification structure for school leaders will see Queensland state school executive principals among the highest paid public school principals in the country.”
Teachers will vote on the new agreement tomorrow.
QTU President Kevin Bates says they will be encouraging members to accept the deal and avert strike action.
“We’ve got scheduled talks this afternoon with the conference to describe to them the package, tomorrow they will make a decision about the strike,” Mr Bates said.
“So we’ll be able to make an announcement tomorrow evening about where to from here.
“We’re not making any judgements beforehand, we’re a democratic union.”