IEU meets with Federal Minister for Education Dan Tehan
The IEU spoke with Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan late yesterday afternoon and again earlier today. The union raised four key issues impacting members that we want the federal government to address immediately.
The first concerns vulnerable workers, who must be able to work from home. This includes pregnant women, those with underlying health conditions, those over 60 years of age and those living with a vulnerable person, such as an elderly parent.
Second, while schools remain open, they must comply with strict safety guidelines to manage physical distancing and other hygiene matters. The union also requested that the guidelines must address the unique needs of workers in special schools, including revised working arrangements and engaging additional staff to manage physical distancing.
Third, importantly, schools receive commonwealth funding. Staffing must be maintained to deliver education in this new environment. A new hybrid model of education is emerging and there is work for all – including support staff.
Finally, all governments must speak with a consistent voice on this new model of education as we move towards term 2.
The minister has promised to get back to the union today and we anticipate a public announcement on these matters. We expect to be involved in ongoing decision making to keep teachers and support staff at the centre of this conversation.