In 2017 and 2018 the Union renegotiated the Work Practices Agreements (WPAs) that apply to all Catholic dioceses except Wilcannia-Forbes. Many of the WPAs contain improved conditions such as improved support for large classes, limits on meeting times, etc. IEU organisers will be discussing the improvements at upcoming IEU sub branch meetings and on school visits.
The WPA that was finalised in March 2018 to apply to Sydney Catholic schools contains new commitments on primary class sizes. The long standing commitment in the WPA was maintained – Years K-6 classes should not normally exceed 30 students. However, the new commitment was “from 2019 no instructional group enrolled in Kindergarten will exceed 32 students with other classes to be reduced to 32 over time by natural attrition”. For the first time, the WPA contains a clear statement that the framework is enforceable and is to be adhered to by Sydney Catholic schools staff. If there is a class in your primary school with more than 32 students, ring your organiser for advice.
Members should also contact your organiser if class sizes in secondary schools exceed the WPA limits – 30 students in Years 7-10, 25 students in Years 11 and 12 and 24 in practical classes.