On Wednesday the Australian Principal’s Federation [APF] called a stop work over the proposed industrial agreement. Its the first time anyone could remember principal class officers taking industrial action as a group.
I took this image at the stop work meeting where over 400 normally conservative principals gathered to express this anger over a proposed agreement that amongst other conditions did not even keep most of their salaries up with cost of living increases [CPI index].
I have been at the top of my incremental scale for principals with this size school for over 5 years now [consequently no salary increases for performance] and with this agreement , if signed look like losing money over the next 4 years when compared to cost of living increases. I’ve been acknowledged as a high performing principal, lecture at principal networks on instructional leadership and more recently manage a major construction project as we rebuild the school for the 21st century. The only way to gain substantive pay increases is to leave my current school and seek a job as a senior education officer or a larger school or as a new executive principal in whatever is defined as an under performing school. Is this the message?
For me and my colleagues its about a sense of fairness. We are the most devolved and one of the higher performing education systems [PISA results] in the world. We are committed to improving students and the overall system performances via a new and more challenging government blueprint, a government which purports to have education as its number 1 priority.
Yet the leadership of schools is treated in disrespectful ways – what legacy are we leaving for the next generation of school leaders? Read the newspapers column: Principals step out for pay rise