MORISSET High School teachers are preparing to join teachers throughout NSW in ongoing industrial action opposing new State Government proposals which they say will seriously undermine the structure of public schools.
Morisset High's NSW Teachers' Federation representative Sue McDonald said her school's teachers believe the government has left them with no choice but to take action to support children's education.
"Our teachers feel anxious about the proposed changes which they feel will downgrade education quality," she said.
Thousands of teachers and principals attended stopwork meetings last month to strongly reject the government's proposed Local Schools, Local Decisions policy.
Teaching needs and the curriculum range for public schools are currently based on the student numbers at each school.
But under the proposed policy, each school would be given a local budget.
Teachers fear the loss of staffing guarantees, the deregulation of class sizes and having principals forced to cannibalise within existing resources just to make ends meet.
Newcastle Regional Organiser for the federation Jeff Ainsworth said the government's move would see the removal of all guarantees relating to staffing levels at public schools.
"The federation would demand status quo, that the guarantees on staffing, curriculum, class sizes, resourcing and funding of public schools remain as they are now," he said.
Ms McDonald said the staffing allocation and class sizes policy are currently protected by an agreement which will finish at the end of term three.
Industrial action is likely to follow in October, she said.
Morisset High School is a large, comprehensive co-educational high school located on the western side of Lake Macquarie and its motto is "successful learning - responsible living".
Ms McDonald said her teachers fear that if the policy results in a budget reduction, their school may have to reduce the number of its teachers, provide fewer subject choices, increase class sizes and cut the number of executives and support staff.
"Also gone will be the recognition of being able to be promoted to executive levels for teachers," she said.
"Our library staff, special education staff, support staff in classes and faculties and office staff could all be in serious jeopardy, leaving students without the assistance teachers have fought hard to achieve."