THOUSANDS of Queensland teachers are set to walk off the job next month as their feud with the state government over pay and work conditions reaches a stalemate.
More than 30,000 teachers voted in the Queensland Teachers’ Union ballot, with 94 per cent backing the move.
The 24-hour stoppage is scheduled for Thursday, July 18, just days into the start of Term 3, unless they can reach a better deal with the state government.
ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT
The Union says it has a number of issues that need to be addressed including massive work loads, gender employment and equity and modernising the pay scale, which they claim is 30 years out of date.
“This is a huge vote of no confidence by Queensland teachers in the Palaszczuk Labor Government,” Opposition leader Deb Frecklington said.
“The strike will cause major disruptions for parents and students right across the state.
“The union vote was the highest in its history, which shows how out of touch the Palaszczuk Labor Government is with Queensland teachers.
“This will be the first teacher strike in a decade and it’s a direct consequence of Labor’s incompetence.
“I want Queensland kids to be the smartest in the nation and schools must be a place for education, not industrial action.”
LNP Shadow Education Minister Jarrod Bleijie claims Labor Education Minister Grace Grace had been caught out with the current agreement set to expire on 30 June.
“Queensland students and parents will now have to suffer major disruptions because the Labor Education Minister couldn’t get a deal done,” Mr Bleijie said.
“The LNP negotiated a fair wage deal in 2012 that was backed in by 95 per cent of teachers voting.
“We have already announced a number of education policies to support teachers struggling to cope with increased workload and improve their working conditions.
“The LNP will air-condition every state school classroom in Queensland.
“We will also give teachers extra support in the classroom and declutter the curriculum to ensure a greater focus on teaching the foundation skills of language, literacy and numeracy.”