NZEI takes legal action against Novopay

NZEI says there are still ongoing problems with the Novopay system (Newshub.)
NZEI says there are still ongoing problems with the Novopay system (Newshub.)

Around 20 school staff members went to the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) this morning over what they say is a payroll issue with Novopay.

The New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI) says Novopay is reducing the pay of around 6000 school support staff including office administrators and teacher aides.

NZEI says it's based on payroll technicalities that result in there being 27 fortnightly pay dates, rather than 26.

Christchurch-based school office administrator Kay Addei says they are already the lowest paid people in the sector.

"It's upset me to say the least. We aren't highly paid individuals," she says.

Mother Danielle Davies was at the ERA this morning to show her support for the school staff.

Her daughter Abbicus has Down Syndrome and requires a teachers aide.

"It's appalling. They're already paid quite low anyway and the work they do is so profound, they should be treated with respect."

However, the Ministry of Education says the method of payment also has nothing to do with Novopay and is about when support staff choose to be paid.

Head of the Education Infrastructure Service Jerome Sheppard says the 6000 support staff chose to have their pay annualised this year. 

"No member of a school's support staff is being or will be underpaid." 

The hearing is set to go until this afternoon.