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New award for School Administrative Support staff

The NSW Department of Education is delighted to announce that the Industrial Relations Commission (IRC) has made a new three-year Award for NSW School Administrative and Support (SAS) Staff – the Crown Employees (School Administrative and Support Staff) Award 2019.

A woman stands behind a counter talking to a student.

School administration managers will benefit from an 11% pay rise under the new award.

The Full Bench of the IRC heard the SAS staff pay equity consent application by the NSW Department of Education and the Public Service Association (PSA) earlier today.

The Commissioners congratulated the Department and the PSA on “their responsible, diligent and cooperative approach to resolving the matter”, and made the award in the terms sought by both parties. It will publish the full reasons for its decision shortly.

The Department’s Secretary, Mark Scott, said the pay equity decision is an important moment for the NSW Department of Education as it strives to achieve its vision to be Australia’s best education system and one of the finest in the world.

“The new award will directly benefit the Department’s 18,000 SAS staff with increased remuneration, a contemporary classification structure, recognition and career options, as well as deliver significant improvements to the way schools operate to help improve student outcomes in NSW public schools,” Mr Scott said.

The new SAS staff award includes an 11% pay rise and a package of reforms including a contemporary classification structure and changes to recruitment and work practices.

Key features of the award include:

  • a one-off pay increase for SAS staff of 11% to be backdated to 1 July 2019
  • two further increases to rates of pay in 2020 and 2021 consistent with the NSW Government Wages Policy
  • a new classification structure for SAS staff that includes school learning support officers (student health support) and business managers
  • new statements of duties
  • the requirement that SAS staff perform first aid, administer medications and undertake health support procedures for students as part of their usual duties
  • new merit based recruitment and appointment procedures to be developed by September 2020
  • schools will have the flexibility to employ a school administration manager, a business manager, or both
  • greater flexibility in SAS staff working hours to meet school operational needs.

The implementation of the new award over the next three years will enhance the day-to-day operations of schools and support the achievement of key initiatives across the Department such as the Disability Strategy, ‘Reducing the Administrative Burden’ program and other HR reform processes.

“The Department values its SAS staff highly and recognises their professionalism and dedication through this new award,” Mr Scott said.

The department has already started work on the implementation of the award, giving priority to the necessary changes in its payroll system to apply the new rates of pay and deliver the backdated pay increase.

“Given the number of SAS staff, this is a significant endeavour, but it will be done as quickly as possible. We have given an undertaking this will be done before the end of the year,” Mr Scott said.

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