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Alliance Party announces teacher sabbatical scheme

Alliance Party announces teacher sabbatical scheme as part of schools education policy

Alliance Party Media Release - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - Friday, October 24th, 2008

Alliance Education spokesperson, Richard Wallis, today announced a new scheme to encourage more people into the teaching profession through the introduction of sabbatical leave for teachers.

This forms a key component of the Alliance's education policy for this year's general election.

"The teacher sabbatical scheme will see every teacher in the country receive a full year off work on full pay to upgrade credentials or merely to refresh themselves. Those who want to leave the profession would have two years at half pay (and of course free tertiary education) to train for another job. The aim would be to have only those in the schools who really want to teach including those who see it only as a first career - and do not want to face a life sentence," he said.

Mr Wallis says this scheme will go a long way towards encouraging more people into the teaching profession and is looking forward to a year off to refresh after ten years.

Other key aspects of the Alliance Party's education policy include:

• Full funding of public education from early childhood to tertiary level, including removal of tuition fees.
• Reduce class sizes to a maximum of 20 pupils in all primary and secondary schools.
• No bulk funding within schools.
• Address the workload issues being faced by teachers in the wake of NCEA.

These policies "represent the most comprehensive commitment to public education of any party in this election as no other party will match us in terms of providing for a fully free and universal education system," he stated.

ENDS

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