Will teachers accept government's latest offer?

By Tema Hemi

Education consultant Huia Puketapu says that teachers should favour the government's $271mil boost to put an end to pay parity concerns that has seen our countries teachers over-worked and under-resourced.

Meanwhile, a secret online ballot for NZEI Te Riu Roa members will begin today and will close at 6pm on 25 June when results of the vote will be made public.  It's a democratic process to increase the quality of teaching across the education system. 

CEO of EdSecTer education consultants Huia Puketapu asks, "Is the money enough?  Well it's never going to be enough is the short answer.  However, how it's distributed and whether they've forecasted it accurately will determine whether it's enough."

Not even two weeks after the teacher's mega strike in May, Hipkins was back at the negotiating table with the extra $271mil on offer.  

"It's definitely a huge improvement since the last time they were at the table a couple of weeks ago," says Puketapu, "It clearly indicates to them there is money somewhere."

Hipkins is confident that the new offer will end the dispute between the teacher's unions and the government.

"I'm optimistic that as a result of the unions recommending to their members, primary and secondary school unions both recommending that their members take the offer- that will make a difference and I'm very hopeful," he says.

Teachers feel they are being over-worked and in particular kura Māori teachers, who mostly have to come up with their own resources.

Primary school teacher Kahurangi Baker says, "Because of the lack of resources available to us we have to make our own.  Our Māori teachers in ngā wharekura, kura rūmaki, kura reo-rua, we all have to come up with our own resources to be able to teach our students."

"So the amount that's involved, particularly for kaiako Māori, they give of their time in school as well as outside of school.  At this time we're just of the back of regional Manu Kōrero and so, long hours spent at kura."

The outcome of the primary teacher and principal votes will be announced on Wednesday 26 June, with the area school teacher outcome announced on Friday 28 June.