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Tuesday, May 15, 2012
The Member for Dubbo Troy Grant has condemned strike action by the Teachers Federation planned for this Friday 18 May.

The strike is being called over union opposition to the Local Schools, Local Decisions education reforms.
“We are not going to be held to ransom by the Teachers Federation. These reforms are to suit students, not the union,” Mr Grant said.

“The Department of Education has promised to work collaboratively with the Teachers Federation and the Minister for Education has previously made assurances that decisions about employment matters will only be made following consultation with the relevant union.

“The Teachers Federation is actually represented on the Local Schools, Local Decisions Joint Consultative Committee and the union also has the opportunity to discuss industrial matters relating to Local Schools, Local Decisions at regular fortnightly meetings with the relevant Deputy Director General.

“But the union is still going ahead with this reckless strike action which will disrupt the school day for hundreds of thousands of students and their parents.

“It will also affect NAPLAN catch up arrangements for students who were unable to sit the tests on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for illness or other reasons.

“It's unbelievable they would hold stop work meetings on a school day and during NAPLAN testing.  Why not hold them after school rather than disrupting the lives of students and parents?

“Students want to learn and teachers want to teach, so it’s unfortunate that the Teachers Federation is proceeding with this unnecessary strike.”

The Department has sought the assistance of the NSW Industrial Relations Commission in an effort to avoid any disruption to students or their families.

As recently as last Friday in the Industrial Relations Commission the Department and the Federation were urged to continue to consult around proposed reforms.

If the strike proceeds, teachers will not be working between 9am and 11am. Parents in the Dubbo should contact their child’s school in advance to check if supervision is being provided.

“I urge the Teachers Federation and teachers to reconsider this unnecessary strike action,” Mr Grant said.

Media: Belinda Strahorn 0412345278

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