Early Childhood Your guide to the VECTEA and EEEA implementation

Photo: Meredith O'Shea

Now that VECTEA and EEEA are well and truly up and running, it’s time to ensure everybody understands their new rights and how to access them.

Both the Early Education Employees Agreement (EEEA) and Victorian Early Childhood Teachers and Educators Agreement (VECTEA) have been in operation for a few months now. With 2022 fast approaching, members should be engaging in consultative conversations with employers, planning for the following:

Time for Educational Leaders and Nominated Supervisors

Clause 45 VECTEA and Clause 52 EEEA

Now that there is provision for one hour per week per service to be allocated to the Educational Leader and Nominated Supervisor, it’s time to start planning how this time will be arranged. Many members say their preferred scheduling would be two hours per fortnight or four hours every four weeks, as this provides extended periods of uninterrupted time. This time can be provided either as release from face-to-face teaching/contact time, which is the only option for full-time employees; or as an increase in non-teaching/non-contact time for part-time employees.

Educational Leaders and Nominated Supervisors who currently receive a higher provision of more than one hour per week retain these arrangements and can only be changed via genuine consultation.

We also encourage members in these roles to build beyond the new benchmark entitlement by having a conversation with your employer about the provision of additional time.

Organisational Days

Clause 34 VECTEA and Clause 17 EEEA

All teachers and educators will be entitled to an additional organisational day at the beginning of the year to allow for planning and preparation to support a smooth start for everyone to the kindergarten year.

This means that the first two days of Term 1 will be common child-free days. Those employees not rostered on for those two days will be able access their child-free day by agreement with your employer within the first two weeks of Term 1.

Please note that organisational days are for teachers and educators to be in their EC centres planning and setting up in preparation for the children’s first day of kindergarten.

This entitlement acknowledges the importance of mentoring as well as providing the appropriate time and support for graduate teachers to succeed.

Time for Mentoring

Clause 52 VECTEA and Clause 61 EEEA

For mentor teachers and graduate teachers employed under VECTEA, an entitlement of four days of time release will be provided for experienced teacher mentors to support graduate teachers to achieve provisional to full registration. The funding ensures mentors and graduate teachers can be replaced and also covers the cost of travel.

Mentor teachers and graduate teachers employed under EEEA will be provided with an appropriate amount of time for mentors to support graduate teachers to achieve provisional to full registration. The four days of funding is available for both mentors and graduate teachers, and the AEU will work with our EEEA members to ensure genuine consultation occurs.

This provision gives mentors the opportunity to support graduate teachers in paid time. This entitlement acknowledges the importance of mentoring as well as providing the appropriate time and support for graduate teachers to succeed.

Capability Assessment

Clause 50 VECTEA and Clause 54

EEEA On 1 February 2022, teachers who have been at Level 2.5 for 12 months will be eligible to progress to Level 3.1.

Successful assessment requires full VIT registration; minimum five years teaching experience; a four-year qualification (or three-year qualification if in the sector prior to 17 February 2006); a clear understanding of the Quality Improvement Plan of the service; a well-developed level of understanding of the professional standards of a Level 3 teacher; and not having been subject to a disciplinary outcome related to your professional practice in the 12 months prior.

The capability assessment process will be simpler. The AEU has been supporting members, running webinars on understanding this new entitlement and preparing for the reclassification process.

The AEU has also been consulting with DET, ELAA and MAV to develop additional resources and a tool guide for employers and teachers, to support both parties with the new capability assessment process. We will share these resources with members as soon as they are made available.

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