In the auditorium at College de Brink in Laren kicks AObdriver Jelmer Evers finished the action in secondary education.
In the auditorium at College de Brink in Laren kicks AObdriver Jelmer Evers finished the action in secondary education.

Statue: algemene Onderwijsbond

Lecturers in live conversation with boards about a better collective labor agreement

Live from College de Brink in Laren kicked AOb- driver Jelmer Evers today at 14.00 p.m. exactly the action for a better collective labor agreement in secondary education. Teams from Terneuzen and Tilburg were already at their school ready for a lively conversation with their administrators. “I'm done with it,” said Evers. “This should be a clear signal.”

Two bright lights, cameras, lots of cords and tables in AOb-green. The auditorium of College de Brink of school leader Eric van 't Zelfde is not an auditorium for a while, but a studio and thus this afternoon the center of action in secondary education for a better collective labor agreement.


Laura Borghols, Dutch teacher at the Veurs Lyceum in Leidschendam, will be there in Laren. She is very hoarse and also knackered, because she has just completed the first period of final exams and the second corrections. When the broadcast has started and she gets the floor, she bends her knees and points under the green AOb-table. “Look, I have to point under this table to show where the teachers dangle when it comes to educational organization,” says the enthusiastic teacher. “At the very bottom after the ministry, the VO council and the boards. That organization is wrong, it should be the other way around.”

AObdriver Evers and teacher Frans Kim van Strien nod. “You work your three strokes in the round and at the end of the day you're not done yet,” says Van Strien. “It's such an unsatisfactory feeling. I have to say I'm happy when the school year is over, because I'm tired.”

'You work your three strokes in the round and at the end of the day you are not ready'

The kick-off of the action at 14.00 p.m. in secondary education, it was the go-ahead for teams across the country to challenge their governance. Supporters and teachers from secondary education were called upon to enter into a conversation with the school management and administrators and to tell them about what is going on in the workplace.

Conversation at school

A team from Terneuzen in Zeeland was already ready with the director when they had the connection with Laren. Hugo Staelens, chairman of the participation council of Lodewijk College, takes the floor: “Everyone should facilitate the primary process of teaching,” he says. Like Borghols, he believes that the organization chart in education should be reversed. "It's good to speak out what we're thinking now." Also in Brabant there are staff members at the school of teacher Michel Verschuren ready to start the conversation on the action day. Although they get an extra chance there, because of the many lessons and completion of the work. “I am definitely looking forward to this conversation, it always leads to a better understanding,” says Verschuren. “Together we must fight for better education.”

Fewer hours of work, more pay

AObdirector Evers will have a meeting with the VO council about the collective labor agreement next week. "This is a last chance because we are very far apart." The AOb wants concrete collective labor agreements on workload reduction in order to properly use the 300 million euros that is structurally available from the ministry. For example 60 hours less task hours and a maximum of 24 lessons per week to begin with. The school administrators want to leave this to the teams, but according to Evers that is difficult in secondary education because of the variety of teams and the amount of staff.


It's all covered during the live broadcast. Afterwards, ICT specialist Marlon Weidema of College de Brink stands against a table with his colleague Noah Oldenburg. They talk about the live stream they wanted to be part of. Weidema: “I wanted to go there, this is important. I have a passion for education, but the workload is high and everything in the shops is becoming more expensive. Should I go for my heart or should I think rationally and switch to a sector where I can earn more. It is such a shame that people are being chased out of education like this.” The action has opened the eyes of Oldenburg, who is training to become a student support worker. “It is also because of our school principal, he stimulates it a lot, but I see that we have to stand up for ourselves. And that I myself need to join a trade union. "

Work less

A little further on, Dutch teacher Borghols is 'still in a state of adrenaline' after the broadcast. She has been teaching for 22 years, but admits that she has been working less since this year. “And really, I'm so against that. But I am looting myself and I don't want to leave education either." By default, she was already sick the first weekend of vacations, but the stress did not diminish after four weeks last summer. “Now I work a maximum of four days and I have one day to recover, but then I am often at home to check. It's a labor of love, old paper. We all have to go on strike or take pitchforks and torches to the VO council”, she says with a wink.

Stop, stop, stop!

School leader Eric van 't Zelfde couldn't be clearer. During the broadcast he puts on his glasses and starts off with his speech under the title: Strike, strike, strike! “Education is becoming a click. Colleagues are tired.” Politics is failing, according to the school leader. “My appeal is: strike for a pay rise. Strike for the quality of education. And do it together, don't let yourself be played off against each other, so all unions together and the VO council, because it is politics that offers the low wage percentage."

'Education is becoming a click'

Van 't Zelfde is concerned as a teacher, as a school principal, because he cannot find people, and as a father. “I can't keep what I promise to parents and I'm part of a bad system where I sometimes have to put my own principles aside.” This year he had to do that several times, he says when everyone in the auditorium is talking. “Mathematics students call and say they only come for an LD position. While my own teachers, who have been doing good work for years, do not yet have that scale. What shall I do then? Not teaching math when it's a core subject? It's a breach of my own integrity. Politics has been cheating us for 20 years now. The turnips are cooked. Hence my appeal: strike, strike, strike!”

Watch the live stream back:

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