Teachers vote overwhelmingly against global funding

Teachers vote overwhelmingly against global funding

Teachers unions have almost unanimously voted to reject the Government's global funding proposal, calling for more action against it.

At a meeting at Wellington's Clyde Quay School on Tuesday, teaching unions NZEI and PPTA announced 99 percent of members voted against the Education Ministry's proposed global budget in meetings around the country.

They say it's a return to the "bulk funding experiment" of the 1990s.

"It means that governments can under-fund education and the schools and centres have to make really tough decisions that impact on negatively on teaching and learning," NZEI president Louise Green says.

She says forcing teachers to make tough calls isn't fair when it's the Government's responsibility to make sure there are enough teachers.

"The global budget allows teacher salaries to be cashed up and used for other things.

"That's going to impact class sizes and the breadth of curriculum at secondary."

Labour's education spokesman Chris Hipkins says the only two outcomes from Government's funding model are bigger classes and fewer teachers.

"They need to give everybody an absolute assurance that global funding is off the table."

Most kindergartens, primary and secondary schools were represented at the meetings held over the last two weeks, where members voted for three things:

"This funding proposal has created unprecedented concern - and unity - across the education sector. Educators see no benefits but great risks to education if global funding is to go ahead," Ms Green says.

She says teachers won't be striking just yet.

"We're educators, we always start with education, learning, understanding what it is that isn't right and is a risk to children and their learning."

At the start of next term the unions will launch a national campaign to help schools and communities understand the impact of the funding proposal.


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