A recent hui of representatives from some of TEU’s smallest branches said the union’s priorities on fair pay and decent working conditions were aspirational rather than a reality for some of their workers.
The hui, which included TEU members from Rural Education Activities Programmes (REAPs), Te Tari Puna Ora o Aotearoa, Plunket Parents as First Teachers, and private training establishments (PTEs), took place last month in Wellington.
TEU organiser Kris Smith said while all these institutions face different issues and challenges they share the challenge of being small groups of workers in a very large tertiary education sector.
“In this part of the sector each group has a different philosophy – clearly for some groupings research is important whilst for others the priorities focus on pay, restructuring and hours of work.”
“However, many of these workplaces share similar issues that others in the sector will identify with too – under resourcing, secure employment status and job security, ongoing restructurings, student numbers, performance monitoring and reporting, hours of work, and workload intensification.”
Kris Smith said the hui has provided an opportunity for members to have some say in the union’s national industrial strategy. It also allowed representatives of this diverse group to talk with some members of the union’s governing council, and committees within the TEU.