Friday, 21 December 2018

TAFE Bulletin – Peak Consultative Group Meeting

TAFE Bulletin – Peak Consultative Group Meeting – December 2018 (PDF version)

As a CPSU NSW (PSA) member you are represented by the Delegates you recently elected. These people advocate on behalf of you and your fellow union members at TAFE NSW. Members’ Delegates, supported by union industrial staff, met with the new Managing Director, a number of senior management and the Teachers Federation at the Peak Consultative Group (PCG) on Thursday 13 December 2018. The Delegates representing you were Brook Down (Chair), Patrick Kiss (Deputy Chair), Simon Gray (Secretary) and Glenda Pryor (Assistant Secretary).

The MD’s report talked to better managing the pace of change in TAFE NSW, the recruitment of more EAS positions, changes to the recruitment process, the advent of TAFE as one RTO in January 2019 and the delay to the Groups 5 and 6 restructures.

At the meeting we raised concerns around the delayed restructures and the lack of communication around what was happening. The message from the MD was that the senior management group were still meeting to finalise the structure and how the change will be managed. It will be business as usual until at least the middle of 2019 and TAFE NSW committed to communicating this to staff through the Friday Five.

Delegates highlighted the pain and distress that the Group 4 restructure had caused and emphasised that better planning is required for Groups 5 and 6.

We sought a written response from TAFE NSW in relation to the SMS project, where it was currently in relation to its timeframe and how staff are, and will be, impacted by it. TAFE NSW has undertaken to provide that response in writing.

We have been concerned about the lack of backfill in relation to extended leave and/or leave without pay. While funding for extended leave comes from Treasury, there is no reallocation.  TAFE NSW stated it is only able to claim funding for extended leave; it is not able to reallocate it to other areas if it does not use it for backfilling.

It was confirmed Level 3 librarians cannot approve extended leave applications on SAP so if members are aware of this happening, please advise your local delegate. The CPSU NSW has requested an audit of delegations on SAP in relation to this so local examples will be helpful.

It was also confirmed that there is no recruitment freeze. All new requests for non-teaching positions had to go through the previous MD, however now it has been changed to the General Manager, People and Safety, who announced that effective 1 January 2019 recruiting decisions will be devolved to the Regions.

TAFE NSW also conceded that delays to the extension of fixed term contracts were unacceptable and should not continue to happen.

With regard to offshore processing TAFE NSW stated that it was not directly employing teams offshore. Work is being undertaken out of a centre in Parramatta and the overflow from there is going overseas.  Your delegates contended that it looked more like 100 per cent of accounts payable was going to India and that there were service level questions to answer. TAFE NSW committed to looking into the service level concerns.

Your union raised questions around whether TAFE employees were missing out on opportunities to act in higher duties positions because agency staff were being brought in. TAFE NSW confirmed that it was mainly happening in ICT as a result of skills shortages. If you know of areas where agency staff are working and have been working for a long time, please draw it to the attention of your local delegate.

Connected Learning Centres were discussed particularly in relation to the CLC in Bega being built off-campus. It was confirmed there will be no teachers’ offices in the new building. Your union has raised a dispute with TAFE NSW in relation to lack of consultation with staff around the building of the CLCs, what courses will run from them, who will work out of them and where they will be located.

There were concerns raised around scaled-down security over the year end break and classes still running over the period. TAFE NSW will be relying on a ‘Safezone’ smart phone app for that period.

Eighty EAS positions have been recruited with 29 of them being in Western Sydney. They are a mix of temporary and permanent positions. If you know of members doing extra duties as a result of not enough EAS staff in the area, please let your local delegate know.

The CSPU NSW highlighted that it would be engaging in further discussions next year with TAFE NSW in relation to staff inductions and making our presence known to new staff. In the meantime, you can support the work of your union and your local Delegates by joining the CPSU NSW. (Insert link)

You can find your Delegates at:

Brook Down

Patrick Kiss

Simon Gray

Glenda Pryor

Please forward this to your colleagues so that they know their rights and encourage them to JOIN THE CPSU NSW.

Please note, CPSU NSW members are also members of the Public Service Association of NSW. The PSA is the Associated Body for, and resources and manages, the CPSU NSW