Teaching, Pay and What Matters

In 2019 the Post Primary Teachers Association (PPTA) / Te Wehengarua signed a new collective agreement with the government, with some highly sought after improvements.

  1. Increase to Trained Teachers base salary scale (get paid more!)
  2. Add a further salary step (get paid more!)
  3. Increase Units from $4000 to $5000
  4. Increase Middle Management Units from $1000 to $2000
  5. $1500 lump sum
  6. And many other things..

This is all well and good - it is important to get recognised, monetarily, for the work you do. However, in the two years since this agreement has come into effect, I have had some enlightening conversations with other teachers (both management, and not). The comments revolved around:

But the thing that stood out to me most was that the increased pay/units does not improve the culture/systems of teaching. The pay is nice, of course, but it does not:

The money makes you feel better about taking work home; about the years lost off your life to stress; about the time away from your family and friends; about the time spent working instead of eating healthy, exercising, sleeping well and looking after your mental health.

Makes you wonder - are we asking for the right thing?