Ministry addresses teachers’ key concerns

The Ministry of Education has offered primary principals and teachers a 9.3 per cent wage increase to settle their collective agreements and is urging teachers and principals to say no to further industrial action.

The Ministry will continue to negotiate with NZEI to avoid disruption for children and their families and to reach a settlement.

The Government and the Ministry have advanced work across a range of areas to address other aspects of the union’s claim and to improve conditions for teachers and principals.

The Government removed National standards because teachers said it significantly contributed to their workload.
It provided over $20 million in Budget18 to increase teacher supply over four years including bringing New Zealand teachers home from overseas.

Budget18 also funded $270 million for children and young people who need extra learning support. Last week the Associate Education Minister Martin launched the Disability and Learning Support Action Plan for consultation and asked the sector to work with her on it.

In addition, the Ministry of Education is working with teachers and principals to reduce their workload, improve teacher wellbeing and plan a medium to long-term workforce strategy.

The Government’s Maori language strategy Maihi Karauna lays out the Crown’s responsibilities to revitalise te reo Māori by 2040. The Ministry is also refreshing Ka Hikitia, the Māori Education Strategy, and Tau Mai Te Reo, the Māori Language in Education Strategy, as part of the Education Work Programme.

These are the areas where we are making substantive progress to positively impact primary teachers’ working conditions, steps which complement the offers to settle the collective agreements worth $569 million that have been made by the Crown.

Please attribute to Iona Holsted
Secretary of Education

Note to editors

As at 1 October 2018

The Ministry is addressing teachers’ concerns

  • Budget 2018 includes $370 million for 1500 new teacher places by 2021 to meet population growth and $59 million for teacher aides.
  • The NZEI and the Ministry are currently engaged in a pay equity inquiry for teacher aides.
  • NZEI also wants to see more funding for learning support. Budget 2018 has already provided more than $270 million in additional funding for learning support. On top of that Associate Education Minister Tracey Martin is developing a Disability and Learning Support Action Plan which will include a range of priority actions to identify and respond to learning needs earlier, and look at the need for additional staff. 
  • NZEI wants to fully recognise teachers with te reo Māori and tikanga or working in Pacific languages, recognise expertise in special education, and curriculum specialisation. This is part of their proposal to refresh the career framework development and work programmes to address sector wide issues. The Ministry is proposing to continue joint work on a career framework.


The offers

In late August and early September 2018, the Ministry of Education presented NZEI Te Riu Roa with new offers worth $569 million to settle collective agreements with teachers and principals.

Salaries - Teachers

  • Teachers will receive a 3 percent pay increase to their base salaries each year for three years for a cumulative increase of 9.3 percent.
  • New teachers who currently start on $47,980 will receive $49,419. That will increase to $50,902 next year and $52,429 in 2020. 
  • A mid-grade teacher who is currently on $59,621 will receive $61,410. That will increase to $63,252 next year and $65,149 in 2020. 
  • At the top end of the scale, teachers on step 12 who currently receive $75,949 will receive $78,227. That will increase to $80,574 next year and $82,992 in 2020.
  • The offer also proposes merging of steps 1-4 to reflect the minimum qualification of New Zealand graduates.

Note: Teachers can earn additional management/leadership payments on top of their base or roll based component salaries ($4,000 units). 38 percent of primary teachers are paid above the top of the base scale.

Salaries – Principals

Principals will receive increases of between 3 - 4.5 percent each year, over the next three years to the roll based component of their salary. That’s a cumulative increase of between 9.3-14 percent over the next three years.

  • In schools of 100 students or fewer, primary principals’ roll-based salary component will increase by 4.5 per cent in 2018 and 2019, and 4.4 per cent in 2020, a cumulative increase of 14 percent.
  • A new principal of a school with 50 students or fewer would see their roll-based salary component salary increase from $81,553, to $85,223. That will increase to $89,058 next year and $92,976 in 2020. 
  • In schools with 101 or more students principals will receive a 3 percent pay increase to their roll based salary component each year over the next three years.
  • A principal with at least nine-years’ experience leading a school of 851-1025 students will see their core remuneration (made up of the roll-based component, the base leadership payment and a career payment) increase from $135,517 to $139,216. It will then increase to $143,027 next year and $146,951 in 2020.
  • We would also make the pay system more transparent and easier to understand by rolling some payments (like base leadership payment and career payments) into one scale.

Primary Principals and teachers collective agreement bargaining fact sheet (as at 11 September 2018) is available here.

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