Union focus on permanency

Nicole Calnan
Membership and Training Officer

Federation has asked for strict conditions on filling permanent roles with temporary appointments

Federation is committed to maximising permanent employment for teachers in accordance with the Agreement between the NSW Department of Education and the NSW Teachers Federation on the Staffing of NSW Public Schools 2016-2020 (“the Staffing Agreement”).

Clause 20 of the Staffing Agreement provides for the Joint Monitoring and Review Committee (JMRC) to monitor the filling of permanent positions to ensure school compliance with the Staffing Agreement.

After the last meeting of the JMRC on November 23, Federation wrote to the Department to call for detailed information on schools that have a high number of permanent positions being filled with temporary appointments. This matter will be the subject of further discussions with the Department in Term 1 next year with the aim of ensuring that the Staffing Agreement is being upheld.

In these discussions, Federation will be seeking to ensure that permanent vacancies are filled by temporary appointments only for the reasons outlined in Clause 2 (see below). If these particular conditions do not apply to a vacancy, Federation will be insisting that a permanent appointment is made. This is consistent with the Department and Federation’s commitment under the Staffing Agreement to upholding permanency as a key recruitment and retention incentive in NSW public schools.


2.1 A permanent position may be filled on a temporary basis when:

  • the enrolments at the school have been and/or are projected to decline;
  • the enrolments at the school have been fluctuating;
  • the curriculum offerings at the school are changing and some subjects have been and/or are projected to decline;
  • part time positions are required to target specific whole school programs which are subject to annual review and change.