Germany: teacher union rethinks education

published 13 January 2017 updated 16 January 2017

The German union GEW is gearing up for a new campaign aimed at increasing the national and local governments’ funding for education.

After a successful rally for the improvement of teaching and learning conditions in primary schools, launched last year in Germany by Education International (EI)’s affiliate GEW, this year’s efforts will focus on the topic of working conditions and professional status in the education sector.

Defining and defending decent work in education

“Decent work is based on quality learning environments and quality teachers”, reads a statement by the GEW published on its website. “In order to motivate and deliver a quality education to their students, teachers and education workers need to be safe and enjoy decent working conditions”, it reads on.

But insufficient funding is deeply impacting German schools: lack of space and overcrowded classrooms hinder teachers from taking care of students and their progress individually, and according to the GEW, clearly put inclusion and integration at risk.

The union is therefore going to take a closer look at professional standards and working conditions through the campaign “ Education. Thinking ahead – More money for education!” ( Bildung. Weiter denken – mehr Geld für Bildung!), which encourages the nation-wide participation from teachers on the ground. The campaign is slated to launch in February.