Earlier this week, the Industrial Relations Commission ordered the NSW Teachers Federation to stop strike action planned for Tuesday, 7 December.
The order extends to any other form of industrial action relating to the Federation’s current wage claims. The Federation has declared it will defy these orders and the strike is likely to go ahead. I want to reassure you that we are doing all we can to ensure teaching and learning continues without disruption – especially given the difficulties and challenges students, parents and families have experienced during the course of this year.
The current Teachers’ Award expires on 31 December 2021 and the department has been negotiating a new Award with the Teachers Federation, with the assistance of the Commission. We have been unable to reach agreement on a final Award and the matter will be arbitrated by a Full Bench of the Commission, scheduled for May 2022.
Rather than wait until the outcome of the arbitration in May, the department has made an application for an interim Award to deliver a 2.5% salary increase for teachers and related employees as soon as the current Award expires. This is the maximum amount allowed per annum under the Industrial Relations Act. It would be effective from the first full pay period on or after 1 January 2022, ensuring our teachers and related employees don’t miss out.
The department is strongly encouraging the Federation and its members to comply with the Commission’s orders. But we are also working to make sure our students and their families are supported should industrial action proceed. We will keep you updated as developments come to hand, both on our website and social channels. Principals will also be in contact about plans for your local school.