Ministry’s statement on Primary Teachers’ Collective Bargaining

To be attributed to Ellen MacGregor-Reid, Deputy Secretary Early Learning and Student Achievement.

“We value the work our teachers and principals do and progressing their pay and working conditions in the current bargaining round is a priority for us. 

“We put a fair offer on the table this afternoon for discussion and will continue to negotiate in good faith.

“To attract new teachers the offer will see a cumulative increase of 14.7 percent to base salaries for graduates with a teaching degree ($47,980 to $55,030) over three years, and a 14.2 percent cumulative increase for graduates with a subject degree and graduate teaching diploma ($49,588 to $56,638) over three years.

“Teachers on the next steps (6-11) will see a cumulative increase of between 6.5 to 13.7 percent to base salaries over three years.  Teachers on the maximum step (12) will receive a cumulative increase of 6.1 percent over three years ($75,949 to $80,599).

“The offer to principals delivers real benefits to all principals, particularly those from smaller schools where they need more release time and where recruitment can be difficult.

“In schools of 150 students or fewer, primary principals’ base salaries would increase by between 9.5 to 11 percent over three years.  That would see nearly 40 percent of primary principals receive an additional $6,000 over three years.

“Principals of schools with 150 or more students would receive an increase of between 6 and 7.6 percent over three years.

“Pay is a key issue for teachers and principals but matters such as release time and other issues such as workload are also important.

“The offer includes extra release time for principals of small schools and for teachers.

“We’re working with the sector to develop a workforce strategy to improve recruitment and retention, and engaging with the profession on a major education reform programme that includes the development of a learning support action plan.

“The strategy also includes looking at assessment, which teachers have told us impacts on workload and their ability to focus on teaching. The Government has already removed National Standards in response to teachers’ claims it was a large driver of workload.

“This month’s Budget included another $20 million to address teacher supply, $272 million additional funding for learning support, $59 million for teacher aides, and $394 million for new schools and classrooms.

“We are committed to making progress and continuing to build a relationship with the profession based on trust and respect.”

Key Stats

  • 38% of primary teachers (12,737) are paid above the top of the base scale (i.e. $75,949) - and average primary teacher remuneration (base salary, plus allowances) is $72,900.
  •  Over the past 10 years, teacher remuneration has grown more quickly than salary and wage rates for the workforce as a whole. Since 2007 average primary teacher remuneration has increased by 30.6 percent to $72,900. Over the same period the labour cost index, which tracks changes in salary and wage rates, has increased by 22.4 per cent. Over the same 10 year period inflation has increased by 21.4 per cent.
  • Primary principals’ core remuneration ranges from $98,360 to $165,339. The amount is largely      dependent on the size of the school.With the Secretary’s approval, boards are able to pay primary principals an additional $16,311 to $25,871 for taking on extra responsibilities.
  • Secondary principals' core remuneration ranges from $104,015 to $216,654. The amount is      largely dependent on the size of the school. With the Secretary’s approval, boards are able to pay secondary principals an additional $16,168 to $31,345 for taking on extra responsibilities.
  • The average remuneration is $123,400 for primary and $157,300 for secondary principals.

 For more information about teachers and principals salaries go to:

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