- Therapists working in the Department of Education to be translated to the Health Practitioner Stream. The Health Practitioner Stream will be imported as part of the Classification and Remuneration Structure of the Agreement to facilitate this change.
- Science Operations Officers to be reclassified as Technical Officers – TO2, TO3 or TO4 depending on role requirements – noting that this should be funded in the model as school-based salaries and not requiring extra ‘top up’ funding from school bank accounts.
- Separate the funding of AAEP and Science Operations Officers to appropriately recognise the STEM curriculum resource and role are separate to the administrative requirements in state school.
- Agricultural Assistants be reclassified in line with their level of expertise, the need for them to conduct technical work, provide expert advice to teachers and to instruct students. Based on the Together Submission to the Agricultural Assistant Review we submit this is to a minimum OO4 or OO5 level.
- All AO2 officers in state schools to be reclassified to a minimum of AO3 and that this be centrally funded and allocated in the staffing model.
- Further position descriptions be developed for finance, HR, Facilities and other key roles at AO4 and AO5 levels, consistent with duties.
- All International Student and Home-Stay Coordinators to be reclassified to AO3 and back paid to December 2016 at this rate.
- Review and reclassify Unit Support Officer roles in Environmental Education Centres.
- IT staff to be allocated as per the GAPS funding announcement in to the staffing model.
- No loss of AAEP hours when a new position (BM or SOO) is allocated in the staffing model.
- The recommendations from RoSAS should be fully implemented, creating a team structure for administrative staff in state schools. A gap from AO2 to AO8 is nonsensical and there needs to be roles in between. When schools create these roles they should be supported to move their staff in to these roles with school endorsement and appointment processes for these administrative staff. A process akin to the proposed School Endorsement Form must be implemented.
- Small school business manager positions to be recognised as the Business Manager roles that they are and reclassified to AO4.
- Schools of Distance Education (SDE) Review of Model and Facilities.
Preamble: Schools of Distance Education (SDE’s) are becoming the solution for students who can’t/won’t attend regular face-to-face schools. The Department is not considering the workloads / facilities & staffing required to address this new paradigm.
Full time enrolments are increasing due to limited choice with medical enrolments / anxiety increasing in students who are unable to attend school due to bullying etc. In addition, as teacher shortages increase, SDEs are assisting other schools by enrolling their students as 0.2 FTE (fraction of a student) to enable them to access courses. SDEs do this at a limited cost and due to the 0.2FTE receive a small portion of school grant and teacher allocation. The administrative workload for 0.2 FTE is the same as 1.0 FTE. This is not recognised in the current model.
Because of the nature of students finding their way to SDE, their turnover is much more frequent than regular school. SDEs can have students leave each term or sooner and come back again in the same year. Each movement requires administrative work to enrol, cancel, refund and re-enrol. This is based on a headcount and the process is the same for each student regardless of their FTE.
Due to the number of school based enrolments, SDEs process a much larger number of enrolments each year. These enrolments stay for the duration of their course which could be 1 term, 1 semester, 1 year or multiple years eg; VET certificate.
For example, in July 2017 for the Cairns School of Distance Education the census showed:
- student FTE was 1091.1.
- student headcount was 2464
The administration work is based on headcount. The grant and allocative model however is based on FTE.
Unlike “regular” schools who exit the students at the end of their pathway after an enrolment of multiple years SDEs exit students as their course finishes at various points during the year.
Again for the Cairns SDE for example the student ‘exits’ were:
2016 = 1643
2017 = 1860
2018 year to date in May = 311 students as left, with another 1357 who will need to exit by end of year so far. This does not include new enrolments coming in Semester 2.
In 2018 the Cairns SDE became a Band 10 school. The Principal role was upgraded and 2 additional HODs added, additional teachers were allocated however there have been difficulty filling these roles. Office staffing has increased however there is still insufficient time to complete all necessary tasks. Additional staff are needed however there are not the required desks or space to house these staff.
Cairns SDE has actually run out of room to house staff. There are employees working in the foyer and reworked spaces. Meeting spaces required for group meetings, meetings with families and exams are having to be repurposed for work space.
There is an urgent need to review both the staffing model and facilities allocation for SDEs, particularly for the Cairns SDE.
- Implementation of the Therapy Attraction and Retention Working Group Recommendations
In addition to the change in classification structure and implementation of the Health Practitioner stream. Implement all of the recommendations of the TARWG.
- Access to resources (ICT and appropriate base location resources).
- Improve the amount of the grant and access to grants for all staff, regardless of fraction.
- Professional development.
- Implement the resources for Evidence Based Practice.
- Conduct a review and update to the supervisory position levels and number of supervisory positions to support therapists working in schools.
- Conduct a review of anomalies in classification structure - revision of process for capped 20 x PO4 statewide progressional position (unreviewed since 2006, inconsistent allocation across different regions and number of positions not reflective of statewide therapy FTE growth).
- That there be a significant additional allocation of staff and review of classification levels for staff working in Education Regional Offices. See attached position papers from each region. This should include a principle that AO2 staff in regional offices should also be reclassified to AO3 as the duties are at this higher level.
- When performing higher duties or 'relieve above level' workers should have their previous service recognised for the purposes of increments in the higher duties role even if there has been more than a 12 month break between relieving opportunities.
- Recognition of Community Education Counsellor Roles and Allocation
CEC's feel their positions are being diminished in schools and are being taken over by other people such as the Youth Support Coordinators who want to do the role of CEC’s without understanding of people and cultures.
All roles need to be clarified so everyone understands where they fit into the school structure without trying to cross over into other people’s roles and responsibilities. Schools need to understand the role of CEC’s and what their specific roles and responsibilities are and not use them as Truant Officers, Playground Duty Officers etc.
The CEC positions across the state haven’t increased in 15 years or more, instead they keep taking hours away from CEC’s and expect the same outcomes. The numbers of Indigenous students keep increasing, and so should the roles of CECs supporting students.
CEC's should automatically come as FTE allocated to schools, these roles should not be an afterthought.
Primary Schools with a large number of Indigenous students over 200 should have state funded CEC’s and not rely on a school if they can afford to employ a CEC. Teacher-Aides in primary schools shouldn’t be performing the role of a CEC, Teacher-Aides positions are different to CEC roles.
- Regional Community Education Counsellor positions
There is a need for CECs to have appropriate and culturally safe supervision. CECs need this strategic influence and guidance. The Role of the Regional CEC is vital to the sustainability and support of CECs work in the region as the population of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in our schools has increased, bringing with it complex issues that only a Regional CEC can guide members through with a holistic approach to intervention and advancement of our children. Cultural capability in schools and the cultural safety of our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families is the core work of a Regional CEC and no other role can provide the same level of support with cultural care.
There must be at least one, if not more, Regional CECs in every region.
- Community Education Counsellor progression scheme
Community Education Counsellors current progression arrangements require advanced qualifications that do not align with like pay levels in the administrative and operational streams. The work of CECs is constantly evolving and CECs have taken up their own PD to support their daily work. There is no capacity for capability to prove we can move forward in the roles without the formal qualifications however the cultural practice and responsibility evolves enormously. Some CECs have been in the job for 8 years have evolved in the focus areas of the region, have had strong influence in schools on Care Teams and Education agendas, however, are stagnant on pay scales that are entry-level due to a lack of formal recognition of their work. CECs work above and beyond their scope in consultation with professional supports. The progression scheme for CECs should be reviewed to focus on criteria relevant to the role not just qualifications.
- REGIONAL ALLOCATIVE MODEL
Together request a regional allocative model be developed. The methodology of the model to consider growth within the department, project consideration, impacting factors such as quantity of employees & FTE, location, IRSED, banding, allocation of hours, remoteness (small schools require a lot of support, larger ones take longer to assist also due to volume and multiple flexible arrangements etc.), schools with new Principal/BM requiring additional support, growth in Occupational and Health concerns, FTE and classification additional to school allocative model of classified positions through growth, workplace reform and location purchase.
With the growing workload in Occupational Health evaluation is requested of upgrading CMO’s to SIMC’s, to reduce case-loads and remove duplication. Occupational Health processing to go to payroll so that SIMCs can focus on client consultancy services and a smaller cohort of schools. Payroll to be recognised for the additional workload in required resources funded from without existing human resources.
Clear identification of roles and duties of reporting and processing roles for Teaching and Non – Teaching sectors. Roles to have clear processing and non-processing distinctions, with separation of supervisor duties to workload processing. Each region through a Local Consultative committee (LCC) determine the roles of supervisors to include or exclude Teaching and Non-Teaching shared supervision. Each LCC to consider the staffing impacts, FTE and wellbeing of employees required when considering the local model functional to the geographic and demographics and workloads.
There are many complexities in the management of non-teaching staff in schools and the workload is enormous and challenging – such as multiple Awards, multiple certified agreements, leave and ADO differentiations, blue card, JEMS, WPR, industrial determinations, deployment, transfer and recruitment advice, decisions and negotiations with Principals and higher level BMs. This structure would support Regions to provide real support to schools for day to day workforce management and for implementation of new and changed systems that continue to rollout as well as SBMAQ, Learning circles, PD Days, provision of training to BMs, Domestic Violence placements, teacher recruitment, attraction and transfer processes etc.
In recognition that the most basic entry level in DoE has pass their desk highly confidential and sensitive information, if only to redirect a client, and in light of the recognition that the Health Department has its entry level a AO3 status, assumed for similar reasons, suggest that DoE Regional offices should have no lessor entry levels. Current work evaluation and comparison with Teaching and schools suggest an award restructure for central/ regional offices is now due.
Current workforce needs to be addressed whilst the department develops an appropriate model to service the needs of regions.