Why are teachers striking? They're doing it for the kids.
I spoke with several teachers about why they were striking. These are their reasons.
"Our kids in Hughes, and right across Australia, deserve the very best educational outcomes. They are the future of this country and governments must start fully supporting their equitable access to high quality education."
Teachers have been doing it tough. Not only have they had to adapt to and from online learning without notice during the pandemic, they are also facing increasingly unsustainable workloads year on year, whilst receiving an uncompetetive salary that has been outpaced by other professions.
This has resulted in an alarming shortage of teacher graduates; the number of vacant permanent positions has increased by 80% since June. Additionally rates of attrition in the first five years of teaching have been calculated to be as high as 40%, not to mention long-term teachers who are now also leaving to escape the unrealistic expectations that have worsened in recent years. This chronic shortage means collapsing classes, 1 in 5 teachers teaching outside their area of expertise and poor educational outcomes for our kids.
Here in Hughes we have nearly 16,000 kids enrolled in government schools. These are the kids who will be negatively impacted by an overwhelming shortage of teachers, both now and in years to come.
Support our teachers on 7th December and voice your support wherever you can. Our teachers love to teach - but are being forced out of the profession by a government that won’t listen, won’t negotiate and won’t respond.
As the Teachers Federation says “if you don’t care about teacher shortages, you don’t care about our kids missing out”.
Our kids in Hughes, and right across Australia, deserve the very best educational outcomes. They are the future of this country and governments must start fully supporting their equitable access to high quality education.