Te Aho o Te Kura Pounamu Specialist and Support Staff Collective Agreement
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Part 7: General Terms and Conditions
Te Aho o Te Kura Pounamu Specialist and Support Staff Collective Agreement
Effective from 17 December 2019 to 16 December 2021
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7.1 Equal Employment Opportunities and Good Employer Provisions
7.1.1 The equal employment opportunities and good employer provisions of the State Sector Act 1988(external link) apply.
7.1.2 The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa agree with the Government’s aspiration in the Pay and Employment Equity Plan of Action that remuneration, job choice, and job opportunities in the state education sector should not be affected by gender.
7.1.3 The employer recognises its responsibility as a good employer to have practices in place that ensure fair and just treatment for all employees. The employer is committed to providing a supportive and safe working environment which is free from discriminatory practices and harassment. Te Kura has a policy and mechanisms in place if employees believe they have been subject to any form of discrimination and/or harassment. Information is held on Te Kura’s intranet site.
7.2 Health, Safety and Wellness at Te Kura
7.2.1 Attention is drawn to the provisions of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. More information on this Act is available on the school’s intranet site. Te Kura is committed to ensuring that all employees go home from work healthy and safe. This is evident through:
- regular meetings of the Health and Safety Committee which contributes to the development of sound health and safety policy and procedures,
- annual health and safety initiatives such as flu vaccinations, and
- free and confidential access to the school’s employee assistance programme.
7.2.2 Attention is also drawn to the policies and procedures adopted by Te Kura in relation to its commitment to health and safety as outlined on the intranet.
7.2.3 The employer will provide protective clothing where necessary.
7.2.4 Where an employee (excluding a nurse aide or nurse) holds a current first aid certificate or recognised nursing qualification and is a designated first aider in Te Kura, such an employee shall be paid an allowance of 35 cents per hour while so designated. The employer shall meet the cost (up to a maximum of $160) of obtaining and renewing a first aid certificate from a recognised provider for a designated first aider.
7.2.5 The parties agree to comply with the Code of Practice for Visual Display Units (VDU) issued by Worksafe, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.
7.2.6 Eye Tests – any permanent employee whose regular weekly hours of work are not less than 20 and who is required to work on a VDU at least 50% of their normal working time shall be entitled to an eye test biennially or as required at the employer’s discretion and expense.
- If the test discloses that prescription lenses are required for the normal viewing distance of a VDU, or that an eyesight problem has been created or worsened by a VDU, then the actual and reasonable cost of the lenses will be met by the employer. The employer will also meet the actual and reasonable cost of spectacle frames where the employee requires prescription lenses for the first time. The cost to Te Kura shall not exceed $300 biennially for any individual, as reflected in the policy of Te Kura.
- If the employee chooses contact lenses the employer will meet the costs only up to the level required to be met under (a) above.
7.3 Employee Assistance
7.3.1 The parties commit themselves to the continuation of an employee assistance programme based on the following statement of principle:
"It is in the best interest of the employer and the employee that a person with impaired work performance should receive early assistance and at the same time be assured that receiving such assistance will in no way be detrimental to their career.”
7.3.2 On-site and off-site assistance will be provided to employees on the following basis:
- It will be voluntary
- It will be confidential and no records will be placed on personal files
- Appropriate professional personnel will be available
- Consideration will be given to meeting costs
- Sick leave provisions apply.
- Employees will not be adversely affected or penalised by participation in respect of promotional opportunities and job security.
- Self referral is encouraged
- It is available when the work of the employee is affected by the personal problems of family members.
7.4 Vacancies and Appointments
7.4.1 Where an employer intends to fill a position that is vacant in Te Kura (other than with a fixed term employee) the employer shall wherever practicable, notify or advertise the vacancy in a manner sufficient to enable suitably qualified persons to apply for the position.
7.4.2 Attention is drawn to the State Sector Act 1988 in so far as it provides that the person best suited to the position shall be appointed.
7.4.3 Every appointee to a vacancy shall be notified in writing of:
- the appointment; and
- the salary to be paid; and
- the hours and weeks to be worked; and
- the purpose and /or duration of employment if the appointment is to a fixed term position.
7.5 Re-entry After Absence due to Childcare
7.5.1 An employee who resigned to care for pre-school children may apply for re-employment under preferential provisions provided that:
- The absence does not exceed four years from the date of resignation or, five years from the date of cessation of duties to take up parental leave.
- The applicant must:
- Produce a birth certificate for the pre-school child;
- Sign a statutory declaration to the effect that absence has been due to the care of a pre-school child and paid employment has not been entered into for more than 15 hours per week or other income received during that absence.
- An applicant seeking re-employment with the employer should give at least 3 months' notice and renew that notice at least one month before the date he/she wishes to return to work, or one month before the expiry of the period in (a), whichever is the earlier.
7.5.2 Where the applicant meets all the provisions of clause 7.5.1 above and, at the time of application:
- has the necessary skills to competently fill a vacancy which is available; and
- the position is substantially the same in character and at the same or lower salary and grading as the position previously held,
then the applicant under these provisions is to be appointed in preference to any other applicant for the position.
7.5.3 Absence for child care reasons will interrupt service but not break it. The period of absence will not count as service for the purposes of sick leave or annual leave or any other leave entitlement.
7.5.4 If an applicant under these provisions is not appointed to any position within three months after the expiry of the period in clause 7.5.1(a) the benefits of these provisions will lapse.
7.6 Union Matters
7.6.1 The employer recognises the rights of employees, in respective work areas, to select a fellow employee to represent their interests on employee relations issues.
7.6.2 The employer acknowledges the key role that representatives play in the positive development of the workplace industrial relationship including:
- Recognition of elected representatives; and
- Reasonable time for representatives to meet with members to discuss work related matters.
7.6.3 A representative of the Union shall be entitled to enter at all reasonable times upon the premises for purposes related to the employment of its members or for purposes related to the union’s business or both. The representative shall enter at a reasonable time and in a reasonable way and comply with existing safety, health and security procedures and requirements applying in respect of Te Kura.
7.6.4 The employer shall, in accordance with relevant legislation, grant union members leave on relevant daily salary /pay to attend union education and development courses or health and safety courses provided:
- This does not unreasonably disrupt the operation of the organisation;
- The union/member has given the employer at least two weeks notice in writing of the intention to take paid union leave.
7.6.5 The employer shall deduct union dues from those employees who are bound by this agreement and who have given the employer written authority to make such a deduction. The employer shall retain an administration fee of 2.5 per cent. The employer shall remit such deductions to the union at mutually accepted intervals.