Illawarra Primary AEU members stop work for respect

Threats by the Rockliff Government to walk away entirely from negotiations has further angered Australian Education Union members as more schools stop work for respect.

Union members at Illawarra Primary on Thursday morning stepped out of the classroom to strike for better working conditions and student learning conditions.

The stop work action follows several recent school walkouts around the state, as the Rockliff Government continues ignoring educators and their Lifting Learning solutions which were presented to the government 14 months ago.

Illawarra Primary educator and AEU Rep Nanna Jansen-Munday said AEU members had grown fed up with the State Government “which doesn’t seem to take education seriously”.

“This Government lacks respect for educators and certainly doesn’t support the growth and learning we expect for our students,” she said.

“So, it’s time for action. It’s not something we do lightly, but we cannot sit by and continue to watch our valued public education system be neglected in the same way our health system and our aged care sector are.” 

“We won’t be quiet. We won’t go away. Enough is enough.”

Fellow workplace Rep Terri Coombes agreed.

“We are taking action today because we have decided we are not going to take it anymore,” she said.

“Educators are exhausted, stressed and cannot manage their workloads. We are simply being asked to do too much. The worst part is we feel we are letting our students down.”

AEU Tasmania President David Genford said Government threats to cease union negotiations wouldn’t hinder stop-work action as passionate Tasmanian educators seek much needed education reform.

“We expect the Government to negotiate in good faith so we can achieve the outcomes needed to lift learning for all students,” he said.

“Until that is achieved, educators across the state will continue to act in the interests of their students, which is to improve our education system.”