Three challenges for Chris Hipkins on teacher pay parity

17 July 2020

The Early Childhood Council today issued three challenges to the Education Minister Chris Hipkins on early learning teacher pay parity:

1. Share your long term strategy to achieve ECE teacher pay parity

2. How will you address funding falling short of the increased wage costs for some centres?

3. How will you achieve ECE teacher pay parity while kindergarten corporations keep receiving funding and teacher pay rate increases to stay ahead of the sector?

The Minister has signalled funding increases announced in the last budget were just the start of a long-term solution to the teacher pay gap.

To give centres certainty, the ECC is asking the Minster to share his long term strategy.

“For many centres, the funding increase didn’t cover the new teacher pay rates. We don’t begrudge paying teachers more, but if we need to dip into our own pockets to pay the government’s wage rise, it’s going to become unsustainable very quickly,” said ECC CEO Peter Reynolds.

Despite ECE teachers doing the same job, with the same qualifications and delivering the same curriculum, teachers in kindergartens are paid significantly more than those in centres. With kindy teacher pay is linked to primary school teacher pay, the belief is their wages will keep going up, making true teacher pay parity impossible.

“We’re calling on the Minister to address these three key challenges to give our sector some certainty, while we wait for the crucial funding review of the current broken model,” said Mr Reynolds.

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