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Byron Shire
December 9, 2021

Have education budget cuts led to putting kids and teachers at risk?

Latest News

More COVID cases Byron and Tweed Shires

ight new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the Northern NSW Health District (NNSWHD) in the 24 hours to 8pm 7 December with Woody’s Surf Shack Night Club and Mullumbimby High School both known recent COVID venues.

Other News

Minister causing ‘serious and irreversible harm’ in State forests

North East Forest Alliance have accused the Ministers for Environment and Foresty, Matt Kean and Paul Toole, of dereliction of duty for failing to implement the minimal changes recommended by the Natural Resources Commission.

Northern Rivers rental crisis worsens

Those advocating for people suffering from housing stress, homelessness, and poverty housing across the Northern Rivers region, say there is an urgent need for the federal government to invest in social housing.

Power goes out on the Far North Coast

Essential Energy says that just over 21,000 homes and businesses on the Far North Coast were affected by unplanned outages on Saturday night, following the severe storms that swept through the region.

Nothing cute about the Frogbit alien invasion

Frogbit (Limnobium laevigatum) is an invasive, smothering waterweed that poses a serious environmental threat which has been found in the Richmond River and at Chinderah.

Call for feedback on new Lismore skate park plan

Lismore City Council is calling on local skaters to provide insight into the design of a potentially new skatepark in the Lismore CBD.

Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: The Gift of Experience

This Christmas I have decided to buy my friends and family experiences.  Experiences also don’t require the purchasing of ‘stuff’. And you don’t have to wrap the stuff in more useless stuff. I’m really trying to reduce the Christmas stuffing. I’m on what I call a ‘de-stuff’ diet. It’s hard, because I am one of those people who has been addicted to stuff. Experiences, if well chosen, can have a low carbon footprint. They can be stuffless.

The United Workers Union, who represent cleaners contracted to NSW schools, say they need more funding.

While schools are closing across the planet owing to COVID-19, NSW schools remain open, for now.

Yet are they fully equipped to deal with the deadly virus?

The United Workers Union, who represent cleaners contracted to NSW schools, said on March 19 that, ‘The extra funding announced by the [Coalition] Berejiklian government for school cleaning is too little and too late. It does not repair eight years of cost savings and cuts to cleaning hours by this government.

‘This continued cost cutting has put the safety of school cleaners, students, teachers and staff at risk.

‘The government and the four cleaning contractors working across our schools have been deliberately driving down wages and direct cleaning hours on school grounds. This cost-cutting has been continuing during the coronavirus outbreak, creating an inexcusable and downright dangerous situation’.

And according to the union that represents NSW teachers, the government’s advice on social distancing (1.5m between persons) cannot be implemented owing to the ‘design of many of our schools, and the size of our classrooms.’

Teachers Federation president, Angelo Gavrielatos, said on March 17 that ‘Beyond social distancing measures, teachers have raised serious concerns about a lack of resources necessary to ensure satisfactory levels of cleaning and sanitation to maintain good hygiene.

Lack of clarity

‘The lack of clarity, consistency and, at times, conflicting advice and opinions expressed by the medical community and elected leaders is creating considerable stress for teachers and principals.’

♦ The NSW Education Department were contacted in relation to the United Workers Union claims.

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  1. Of course dramatically reduced funding to all areas of public education are endangering teachers, ancillary staff and students. Not to mention the community.
    Being required to act as ‘babysitting’ facilities with no safety resources except those sourced and created by staff has further eroded morale and confidence in the system.
    This travesty should cease if education is important. Teachers have done an amazing job under incredible pressures to create, develop and deliver online learning within two days. No specific instructions or resources, just teachers supporting teachers to support students.
    There are better ways to care for children of workers than in schools where teachers aren’t allowed to teach in case non present students are disadvantaged.


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