School Administration Staffing Formula Q&A

Thanks to the pressure CPSU members put on the Rockliff Government, the Department for Education, Children and Young People (DECYP) has come back to the table. Alongside our School Administration Advisory Forum, we’ve been able to move your long-overdue School Administration Staffing Formula forward!

We recently caught up with members for a breakdown on how the formula works. Here is your Q&A based on the top questions we’ve received so far! Got a question that hasn’t been answered below? Get in touch with your questions and we’ll continue to update this page as we go!

School Administration Staffing Formula – Frequently Asked Questions

“Our school currently resources an Administration Staff member on 0.25 FTE. How will a change in allocation affect us?”

There should be no change to your allocation based on whether you currently utilise SRP to address staffing needs. Schools will continue to have the right to address resourcing needs through SRP, however right now this is under-utilised in a lot of schools. SRP is explicitly available for School Administration!

Your allocation increase may be equal to or greater than 0.25 FTE, so it will be up to you to choose how you allocate your SRP moving forward, including if you want to continue to resource additional resources to school administration to decrease workload.

This will look different in every school community.

The CPSU has been clear to DECYP that SRP can not be denied on the basis that it is being sought for administration needs. If this affects you, contact the CPSU at cpsu@tas.cpsu.com.au so we can advocate for you directly.

“What’s the margin for a change in allocation to kick in? If we’re even one student over will our resourcing go down?”  

Each year after census, schools will calculate the change in their allocation based on their enrolment numbers.

If your student numbers increase, you will get an increase in allocation that year. These changes will be automatic. If the formula identifies a decrease in resourcing needs, there will be no change to your staffing until that decrease corresponds to 0.2 FTE, or approximately one day’s paid hours.

Formulas can be a blunt instrument, which is why it’s important that it will be reviewed every three years to ensure it works in practice. If you experience a change that doesn’t make sense to you, let us know so we can feed this on.

Be alert! We expect that DECYP will approach schools with decreases below 0.2FTE and suggest you volunteer to fund the difference through your SRP. Your union’s advice is that you should not accept this. No change should occur until you reach the threshold of 0.2FTE.

“There is a shortage of trained administration staff. How will we/DECYP recruit for the new staff?”

This is a growing problem for everyone. Our schools are facing a retirement cliff which DECYP has failed to get its head around. The CPSU’s position is that we need to make it a more attractive job is to increase the hours available to School Support Staff and lift the classification. We’re working to close the gap between School Support Staff and 52-week staff.

The other solution is to change the School Administration Classification Structure for Admin Clerks and SBMs. You are highly skilled workers – it is completely unjustifiable that School Admin are Band 2. Service Tasmania staff are Band 3. HR is between a Band 6 and a Band 7 in corporate and many SBMs carry higher responsibilities, bigger budgets, etc.

Equivalent work should be equivalently valued. That’s what we’re pushing for.

In your latest public sector Agreement, we did secure a commitment that DECYP would review the Classification Structure of all School Businesses Managers, with back dating of pay rises to 31 March 2022. We’re in the process of negotiating the details now.

We’ve called for a change in the Classification Structure for School Administration staff. School Clerks are undervalued and underclassified, which also impacts SBM workloads. DECYP opposes this change and has refused to move in the past wage agreements. So, what we need to do is build our union density within that group so that we can continue to push that forward.

What about those not at Band 2 and High Schools that have permanent Band 3s?

It’s all funded at Band 2. If you want to increase the hours of your Band 3 positions, or Band 4 then you have to go through the existing processes on Page Up for doing that.

We tried to get you more flexibility around this but DECYP refuse. We will continue to push for it. The CPSU’s view is that it should be an allocation of money and you should decide how that is used within your existing classification of roles.

Time for the value of your work to be recognised!

The reality is that we need a broad banded Band 2-3 Classification Structure which would allow schools to hire a Band 2, rapidly train them up into Band 3.

We’ve fought for this again and again and DECYP are dead against it. We can win it, but to do that we’ll have to grow union voice in School Administration. So if you want to see this happen, it’s critical that you talk to every one of your colleagues about joining the CPSU today!

In the meantime, if you are working above your band or a member of your team is you should encourage them to apply for a reclassification today.

In the past people haven’t been willing to apply for reclassification because they’ve been concerned that they will have to re-apply for their job. Thanks to CPSU members taking action, that is no longer the case:

Don’t wait in line to be recognised.

Get our free CPSU Reclassification Toolkit.

We’ve secured a new entitlement which allows Heads of Agency to approve Direct Selection, with criteria including where someone has been found through a review to be underclassified.

This is an entitlement under your Award. You can contact the CPSU for our Reclassification Toolkit and for support to apply.

Contact Form – Schools – Reclassification Kit

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