WelCom September 2018:
Teachers, staff and students from New Zealand’s Catholic schools joined primary school teachers and principals around the country on a full-day strike on Wednesday 15 August. In Wellington, thousands of teachers marched on Parliament to send a message to the Government that there needed to be better investment in education and to protest about pay and conditions.
Sue Cranney, assistant principal at Sacred Heart Cathedral School, Wellington, says the main issues concerning the teachers are funding for special needs children in schools, retention of teachers, and the pay scale. ‘We have more and more kids with special needs and they are not getting the funding needed and we’re not trained to deal with the growing complex situations. To support children with special needs is a social-justice issue,’ she said.
‘Since 2010, there are 40 per cent less teachers being trained than what is needed and, with an ageing population, over the next 10 years a predicted 40 per cent will be leaving. Twelve-hour days are now the norm. This is not realistic anymore and something needs to happen.’