MP promises class sizes won't go up

THE Member for Bundaberg Jack Dempsey has assured Bundaberg teachers that class size limits will not increase.

The news came as Mr Dempsey met with a delegation from the Queensland Teachers' Union yesterday to hear their views on enterprise bargaining.

The meeting follows a rally of teachers in Anzac Park, across the road from Mr Dempsey's office, on Thursday afternoon.

At the rally the teachers were told the government had offered them a 2.7% pay increase, but also wanted to strip conditions from them.

They were told this could lead to increases in class sizes.

But Mr Dempsey yesterday guaranteed the State Government was not planning to increase class sizes.

"As the local member I will make sure their concerns are heard," he said.

"I want to make it quite clear there are no plans to increase class sizes.

"There are no ifs or buts."

Mr Dempsey said one of the other concerns expressed to him was the issue of the school cleaners' contracts.

"The cleaners' contract do not run out until 2015, so they're quite safe until then," he said.

Mr Dempsey said the State Government would negotiate fairly and reasonably with the teachers' union.

"Obviously we've still got to take into account the overall financial mess the state has been left in," he said.

"The fact remains we're heading towards paying $685,000 an hour in interest."

Mr Dempsey said if the State Government could not achieve efficiencies in its departments all Queenslanders would have to pay.

"That will leave more debt for our children to pay off," he said.

Mr Dempsey said the restructuring in government departments would mean there would be more jobs in future.

"That means we will have a stable community in the future," he said.