05 October 2004
A day to value the teacher
Enhancing the status of teachers is key to attracting high quality graduates into the teaching profession, PPTA president Phil Smith said today.
He said the theme of this year’s World Teachers' Day - Quality Teachers to be recruited and retained - provided an opportunity to draw public attention to the crucial role teachers play in society.
“Today is the day in which we value what teachers do.
“Teachers’ influence goes far beyond the classroom. They help create our future leaders, our product designers, artists and writers, sportspeople and engineers. They instil in people an enthusiasm for life-long learning and a desire to contribute positively to society.
“Teaching is a very busy and at times stressful occupation, but the many positive things happening in schools and high average level of student achievement in New Zealand demonstrate how passionate teachers were about their jobs and helping their students achieve.”
Mr Smith hoped the new secondary teachers collective agreement would go some way towards making teaching "a profession of the future" that was appealing both intellectually and financially.
The agreement includes a combination of increased pay, incentives such as sabbaticals and new middle management allowances, measures to reduce workload and new career pathways to keep good teachers in the classroom.
It also includes a series of working parties on teacher workload, professional development, new advanced teaching qualifications, career pathways, extension of the sabbatical scheme, and the working environment in secondary schools.
“Teaching can offer incredible job satisfaction. The working parties will make recommendations that we hope will form the basis for a range of improvements to teachers’ working conditions that will increase the level of job satisfaction and the attractiveness of the teaching career as a whole.”