NSW Public Schools Education budget approach - What about us? - Public Service Association

NSW Public Schools Education budget approach – What about us?

On 9 April 2024 the Education Secretary announced a number of cuts to the NSW Education budget across Public Schools and Education Support teams. NSW Public Schools have seen a fall of student enrolments of approximately 30000 since 2020. SEE HERE

What we do know

Spending across NSW Department of Education (DoE) support teams (head office) has been reduced by $1.4 billion over the next four years. The Department has reduced spending on advertising and removed more than 600 contractors. Significantly reducing the use of consultants and streamlined programs and teams as directed by NSW Treasury.

A Co-ordinated Corporate Services review is currently underway seeking to identify duplication of services and eliminate so-called waste within the organisation.

These reviews of divisions and directorates continue to concern members. The PSA is seeking ongoing extensive meaningful consultation with detailed change management plans and realistic timelines to deal with members issues.

School budgets Key points

The department will reduce the School Budget Allocation Report (SBAR) by 1.25 per cent for this calendar year, excluding small schools, schools for specific purposes (SSPs) and Intensive English Centres (IECs).

The department wants to ensure there is alignment in additional curriculum release time and executive teaching time across schools. This includes, where possible, ensuring the timetabled classroom teaching load of executive teachers meets the minimum requirements in the draft proposal from the Executive Teaching Time Review interim report: 0.6 for Assistant Principals and Head Teachers, and 0.2 for Deputy Principals. The Government wants every class covered:

  • reducing additional curriculum release funding for executives in primary schools (for first Deputy Principal position) to achieve parity with release funding for executives in secondary schools.
  • transitioning to end disaster supplementation funding, which has been in place since 2019, earlier than planned for some schools, to be fully completed for all schools by the end of the 2024 school year.

What does this mean for PSA members? We need answers

Clearly PSA delegates and members have expressed concerns during term 1 in relation to the slow progress of the following Industrial issues:

  1. 2023-24 Temporary Workforce Transition project tranche 2- while the first round of permanency offers saw approx. 16000 teaching and support staff made permanent. There is still an unacceptable number of long-term temporary School Support staff working across NSW Public schools. When will the tranche 2 process recommence? What are the revised criteria for further offers of permanency for eligible members?
  2. 2024 SASS staffing operation nominated transfer’s and vacancies – When? Why? And how?
  3. Professional Learning and Development: will the current budget be maintained? When will the outcomes of the current mandatory training review be made available to members?
  4. 200 Departmental policy Line by Line review? The PSA understands the Support team managing this project will be subject to these budget cuts. What happens next?
  5. Staff Wellbeing initiative: in term 4 2023 the department outlined a promising project to address record workers compensation injuries and address the inappropriate level of school workplace violence. Recent announcements will see part of the proposed support initiatives to schools placed on hold or abandoned.
  6. The current Schools and Administrative Support Staff Award expires on the 30 June 2024 as, yet the department has not obtained approval to commence negotiations with the PSA. This includes the other Awards covering PSA members within Education. It is the PSA delegate’s intentions to have the department not only deliver a reasonable salary increase but to also negotiate a new SASS staffing agreement with a 21st century staffing formula to address the current workload crisis within schools.

What happens next?

The PSA has contacted the department seeking a series of meetings to commence consultation and direct negotiations around this very large number of Industrial matters directly linked to these budget announcements. Your union will communicate with members again in early term 2 as to ongoing campaigning to address matters which are not subject to a satisfactory outcome for members.


PSA Industrial staff

Industrial Manager – Julie-Ann Bond

Industrial Officer – Greg Shaw Senior

Industrial Officer – Sharny Chalmers

Organiser – Ann Attwater

Organiser – Marisa Bosco

Organiser – Susan Chee Quee

Organiser – Alison Crittenden

GA Organiser – Peta Noke

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