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Illegal employment practices

Illegal employment practices

Only 15 percent of new graduates being employed in permanent positions upon leaving study, with many more being forced to accept illegal contracts says the Post Primary Teachers Association.

A paper presented today at the PPTA annual conference shows that schools are relying more and more on fixed-term and part time contracts. The use of fixed term contracts without genuine reason and repeated fixed term contracts is illegal.

“Schools often don’t know what their funding will be from year to year, and sometimes even from term to term, and they are using fixed term contracts as a way to manage funding. Sometimes they use fixed term contracts as a way to illegally “trial” new teachers. Whatever the reason, the result is a new class of teachers who have no secure income,” PPTA president Angela Roberts said.

“Too many beginning teachers are finding themselves graduating into a ‘career-less’ work environment. When teachers have no stable or predictable income it can negatively affect their personal and professional life.”

“From not being able to bed-in teaching skills through to not knowing whether the rent will be paid, precarious work is bad for teachers and bad for the profession as a whole. Teachers in precarious work can’t progress in their careers, build strong relationships with their students and peers, and often don’t feel safe enough to become involved in their union and professional association.”

“We’re advocating for better monitoring of the use of illegal fixed-term contracts and calling for a voluntary commitment from schools to support and mentor teachers who are establishing their careers.” Roberts said.

PPTA members will be discussing the paper ‘Teachers in the precariat: fixed-term contracts and the effect on establishing teachers’ at their annual conference today.

PPTA’s annual conference runs from 27 - 29 September and is an opportunity for members to debate, discuss and vote on papers that shape PPTA policy. Decisions are made by secondary teachers for secondary teachers.

The full conference papers can be found at: http://www.ppta.org.nz/events/annual-conference

The conference is being held at the Brentwood Hotel in Kilbirnie, Wellington and media are more than welcome to attend. It is also streaming live at www.ppta.org.nz


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