The PPTA’s Secondary Principals’ Council and Secondary Principals’ Association will vote on an interim agreement that introduces some key changes to the Government’s Investing in Educational Success (IES) initiative.
The agreement follows lengthy negotiations between the unions and the Ministry, and aims to address some concerns currently held about the Executive Principal role, which involves selected principals taking two days a week to work across a cluster of schools. It was felt that funding was weighted too heavily in favour of the Executive Principal, instead of allocated across the cluster of schools.
To this end, the interim agreement seeks to change some of the more controversial elements of the role, including the title and the amount paid.
The Executive Principal role is proposed to change to Community of Schools Leadership Role, but more significantly, the extra money paid to principals in this role will reduce from $40,000 per annum to $30,000pa.
Allan Vester, chair of the Secondary Principals’ Council, says there were some principals keen to see this figure lowered yet further still to free up more money to go to the schools.
As things stand in the agreement, the savings will allow schools to receive $1000 a year to cover the costs of working in clusters. Schools will be paid for 0.4 FTE to cover the principal’s absence – a concession to concerns about schools’ ability to operate effectively without its principal for two days a week.
The Change Principal – a role that sees principals working in particularly troubled schools – has also been addressed in the interim agreement, with the term extended to up to seven years.
It will be some time before the agreement is put to the vote, as working groups made up of Ministry and union representatives are currently working on the practicalities of putting the revisions to IES into action.
Vester confirms the Ministry-union partnership is working well together on IES and collaboration has been very positive to date.
“I think it is very likely the agreement will be ratified,” he says.
Meanwhile, the results of the New Zealand Educational Institute’s vote on whether the IES initiative is to be revised or rejected are expected to be released tomorrow.