Auckland teachers strike for the second time this year

By Tema Hemi

The latest pay offer from the government has not resonated well with NZEI Te Riu Roa.

Teachers on strike in major centres around the country today say the government offer is welcome but isn't addressing the problems they are faced with on a daily basis. 

Teacher at Gladstone Primary School and NZEI member Kahli Oliveira says, "From my perspective, it's throwing money at it, there's obviously good intent in terms of 3% over three years, so that's 9% and depending on where you're sitting on the scale it's a good pay rise but it doesn't address our workload and at the moment our workload is insurmountable."

Class sizes or professional time claims are among the major concerns voiced by educators. 

In open discussions today at the Mt Albert Memorial Hall one teacher says, "[The Education Review Office] is coming to our school next year to look at our teacher's criteria, that's one thing where we can just go pfffft- let's get rid of that."

Another says, "We need to be really clear as to what will we accept, [the government] are not going to give everything we're asking for so having those conversations with your staff about what exactly will you accept."

Oliveira says, "We're in a crisis so recruitment and retention of good quality teachers, of attracting teachers to the profession, being paid what we're worth, giving us time to teach time to lead, and I think we have to change the public perception of what teachers do."

Strikes in other parts of the country will start tomorrow and will go on through to Friday.