Schools to stop
IT is more than likely that schools around South Gippsland will be shut on Thursday.
Teachers will be taking industrial action because the Australian Education Union is still in ongoing dispute with the State Government and as part of the negotiation process.
Due to the breakdown of negotiations, the AEU is encouraging a number of bans to highlight the many extra hours of work teachers do beyond the 38 hours they are at work.
Jeff Gray, Gippsland organiser for the AEU, said the protest is almost a sure thing.
“Unless we have a magical miracle breakthrough between now and Thursday, it certainly will be going ahead,” he said.
“I would think in the South Gippsland area you would get a pretty high level of support from schools.
“Obviously it’s up to individual members whether they stop work or not. We can’t force them to but I’d say every school would be affected in some way.
“There will be some schools that will have to close because there will be nobody on deck but also a number of schools where only selected classes (will run) and that sort of thing.”
Catholic school teachers are also getting behind the AEU’s action.
“Catholic schools are stopping work also and are pursuing their own EBA,” Mr Gray said.
“What tends to happen is that the Catholics tend to use the agreement between government schools and the department as a basis for their own agreement, but because it has taken us so long to get our claim they haven’t got anywhere with their negotiations as well.
“It is my understanding that most Catholic teachers will be stopping work on Thursday as well.”
The deadline for teachers to notify schools whether or not they will be stopping work was midday today (Tuesday).
Leongatha Secondary College will most likely have no normal classes running. Korumburra Secondary is in the same boat, with a strong union presence in the staff room leading to the possibility of no classes.
At Leongatha Primary School, the action will have a dramatic impact, with 17 of 28 classes cancelled and three specialist programs not running.
Over in Wonthaggi, there will be a significant interruption to classes and a Wonthaggi Primary School spokesperson was unsure of the specifics at time of printing.
At Mary MacKillop Regional Catholic College, a handful of teachers will join the stop work, with Year 9 students forced to stay at home.
For more information about what each individual school is doing on Thursday, contact them directly.
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