Queensland teachers vote for rolling strikes

Issue 

Queensland teachers vote for rolling strikes

By Bill Mason

@box text intro = BRISBANE — Queensland teachers have voted overwhelmingly for a campaign of rolling 24-hour strikes in state schools to demand better pay and to protest the Borbidge government's controversial Leading Schools Program.

Almost 20,000 of the 35,000 members of the Queensland Teachers Union (QTU) voted. The turnout has stunned the state government, which had tipped a poor response.

About 70% voted in favour of a series of day-long stoppages from May 12 to May 23. Almost 90% voted to continue a ban on the Leading Schools Program, which will hand control of school budgets to councils of parents, teachers, community leaders and the principal.

The government has applied to the Industrial Relations Commission to have the strikes banned.

QTU president Ian Mackie hailed the vote on May 2 as a "resounding rebuke" to the government. Mackie said the government needed to raise its pay offer of 12.5% over three years to 18%.