NorthTec can’t settle

Posted By TEU on Dec 8, 2011 |

Tertiary Update Vol 14 No 46

NorthTec is currently trying to cut working conditions and extend teaching hours for its staff, when most other polytechnics around the country have come to amicable settlements with their staff in the last two months.

NorthTec, one of only two remaining ex-MECA ITPs yet to settle with its TEU staff members, is seeking to remove all limits on timetabled teaching hours and maximum number of teaching days from staff working conditions, as well as reducing leave for new staff, so they can teach more.

NorthTec CEO Paul Binney told TEU negotiators that getting fewer staff doing more work wasn’t immediately underpinning his employment offer, but he added:

“Let’s not duck that topic. That has to be an objective going forward. We need to be more productive and efficient so need to do more for less.”

This has led to the situation where TEU members at NorthTec today begin a ballot for industrial action, at the same time that TEU members elsewhere around the country are holding ratification ballots.

“Given the settled environment elsewhere, we anticipate a concentrated effort at NorthTec next year”, said Organiser Chan Dixon, “although their employer’s unreasonable position is hardly the ‘ho ho ho’ that TEU members at NorthTec want as they head towards the summer break, especially after more than three years without an increase to their salary.”

Also in Tertiary Update this week:

  1. Threatened boycott on advertised jobs at VUW
  2. Student loan statistics get worse
  3. OECD says invest in education to end inequality
  4. Charter schools an unpleasant surprise
  5. Have your say on Tertiary Update next year

Other news

Tertiary Education Union UCOL branch president Tina Smith voices her support for locked-out CMP workers at a protest near a McDonald’s outlet, in Palmerston North – Photo in the Manawatu Standard

Lincoln University has closed two buildings after a detailed engineering inspection. Vice-chancellor Roger Field said today the Hilgendorf Wing (including the TEU office) and the Student Union building would be shut until further notice – The Press

The University of Canterbury will rely on its implicit Government guarantee to meet payments to investors on its unrated 10-year bonds after the earthquakes scared off students – TVNZ

New Zealand has really done little more than keep up with inflation until the last three years when expenditure has started to increase, but even now we are probably still at 60 to 70 percent of what appears to be an international consensus on the appropriate level of public expenditure  committed to research by other small advanced nations. There is evidence that private sector spending only starts to increase when a critical mass of activity flows from the public sector – Sir Peter Gluckman, the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor.

Many workers with caring responsibilities want flexible working arrangements and/or part-time hours. But there is no evidence to suggest these workers want casual work. Research suggests they are forced to accept casual work or other types of insecure work because they are unable to access quality on-going part-time work – The University of South Australia and the Workplace Research Centre debunk five myths about insecure work.

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