Bulletin for the Network of Establishing Teachers (NETs) 21 September 2012. The bulletin is published as an information update for teachers who are members of the the New Zealand Post Primary Teachers' Association / Te Wehengarua (PPTA) and are in their first 10 years of teaching.
Come on, Get amongst it!
5 tips on getting active
So you’ve embarked on the wonderful and challenging journey of a career in teaching. I’ve seen it before - you started out with an energetic sparkle in your eye – feeling like you’d won the lottery, just by getting a job. But by this time of the year, you’re feeling pretty knackered, a tad time-poor (with mounting reports, marking, exams, coaching, PLD, meetings, etc), and basically you’ve given up trying to keep a social life rolling.
Come on – if you’re honest with me – the state of our public education system, workers’ rights and industrial relations are the last things on your mind! In fact, even if you had the time - getting involved seems just a little too hard and those who are involved seem infinitely more experienced and informed. BUT, WAIT … before you sigh in agreement and skip on to your next email... getting ‘amongst it’ is not as difficult or time-consuming as you may think - and luckily, we’re here to guide you on the way:
1. Get informed
That’s right folks – come to Mahi Tika to learn about your collective agreement, keep your eyes peeled for education programming on TV, listen to the radio on your way to work if there’s coverage of education policy or employment law, scan online media and blogs for issues that may affect teaching – and yes, go on, treat yourself – open that PPTA News magazine in your staffroom!
2. Get social
Use social media like Facebook and Twitter to stay in touch with your network and community and share your opinion.
|Follow PPTA and NETs
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Share links to bloggers who articulate their viewpoint coherently and convincingly. By getting your ‘insider knowledge’ about teaching out there, you can dispel the myths that are propagated by those outside the profession. Or just hit ‘share’ when you come across things like:
3. Get vocal
Don’t be shy, speak up - the only way to rebut misinformed ranting about a ‘failing’ education system is to voice an alternative view. That’s right, I’m going to say it (cringe!) “Think Global – Act Local”. Write to the editor of your local paper, go to meetings in your community, put your hand up and give an opinion as a member of the teaching profession.
4. Stand up
What’s happening in your school? Do you go to your PPTA branch meetings? Do you talk to colleagues about issues? If a problem arises or you disagree with proposed changes, do you look for constructive ways to engage and resolve issues?
5. Front up
Put your name forward to be an Establishing Teacher Representative - there are many ways you can join in and PPTA is always keen to support its new activists. Go to a conference, or a regional meeting and raise an issue that matters to you. Get brave - we need you to be active - you are the union!
Establishing Teachers’ Committee Convenor