Communications Report June 2022

Tēnā koutou katoa, nau mai haere mai to the latest communications bulletin.

It is with some regret that I announce to you the resignation of Ian de Stigter, our Advocacy Officer.

Ian has decided to step down from this role after many years of serving the Technician Community, years spent striving to better our conditions, our standing and our recognition.

Ian’s contributions, his research and comprehensive reports have gone a long way towards aiming to achieve the above.

On behalf of the Executive, I thank Ian for his dedication, passion and commitment in furthering the cause of School Science Technicians and for his valuable and knowledgeable contributions whilst on the STANZ committee.

We will miss you and your input at our meetings but also realise that you are just an email away…….

Ian would like to share his resignation letter with you all.

Resignation
I have resigned my advocacy role on the STANZ executive. I am mindful of the support and encouragement of executive members, and of other science technicians. Some will be surprised, and perhaps disappointed, that I have not seen out my 2-year term. Since 2006, I have made efforts to improve the prospects for members of our professional group, by collecting and interpreting data about science technicians working in schools. In 2019, when I stood for STANZ Executive, I imagined continuing there in an advocacy role until our Pay Equity Claim succeeds. However, with the long-awaited publication of Safety & Science in November last year, I have recently been able to finish my study on Science Technicians as Lab Managers. I think this is my last contribution to the science technician advocacy data. Moreover, NZEI has expressed a preference to liaise with the STANZ executive through a female member. I haven’t thought that my gender has impeded an objective assessment of the roles and employment of our professional group. I concede, however, that NZEI has a point: my wife could attest that I don’t think like woman! Since nearly 90% of our members are women, I may not be best-placed to represent their views. So, it seems to me appropriate to now step down, and in doing so, express my strong confidence in Sheryl Fitzsimons – both an NZEI insider, and STANZ executive member – who has picked up this liaison role, and is able to well-represent our professional group for Pay Equity purposes.
Ian de Stigter

Safety & Science Update from NZASE:

I have recently attended the NZASE AGM and Meeting where the workshops for the new Safety and Science were discussed.

Apologies were given for the slowness in communicating the dates and contents of the workshops.

This has now been addressed and further information can be found by clicking the links below.

NZASE Article  

Workshop Registration Form   

The workshops will consist of 45 minutes of information with time at the end for questions. They will be via zoom with a maximum of 100 people able to attend each session. NZASE expressed surprise at the popularity of the workshops. That just reinforces the need for them.

NZASE will also present at Conference so there will be a learning opportunity there as well.

Below are the times for the workshops. Please note there are also workshops for Principals and teachers  but I have not included those here.

FULL no further space – Technician, Tuesday 5 July, 8:30-9:30 am

FULL no further space – Lab Manager/HoD, Friday 8 July, 12:00-1:00 pm

Technician, Thursday 28 July, 12:00-1:00 pm

Lab Manager/HoD, Wednesday 3 August, 4-5pm

Please remember these are being run voluntarily by teachers and technicians with no funding from the Ministry at all. A huge thank you and much appreciation to all those involve in making this happen.

Also note that your school does not have to be an NZASE member to participate in these workshops.

Changing your details?

If you are needing to change  any of your details, be they change of Technician, change of address, change of school, change to subscription to Scitechtalk or Tech Tonic, change of name or maybe you are resigning  please use the membership form on the website to do this.

Copyright Rules:

Just a reminder that it is not appropriate to share any paid for information via the forum. There are copyright issues with this and we may be held accountable. Examples of this might be information from CLEAPSS, Chemwatch or similar. These are organisations which require an annual subscription to be paid so information from them should not be shared.

Accumulated Wisdom:

It is encouraging to read that so many of you are turning to AC before asking questions on the forum.

Thank you again to Melaina McClure for keeping this updated.

Forum Use:

A big thanks to you all for contributing to the forum and especially recently with some new techies being helped so quickly and ably by you. Your short, concise and informative answers are appreciated.

Conference:

The Conference Committee have been very busy of late. They have announced some exciting scholarship opportunities for eligible recipients and Registrations have now opened.  

It’s also great to get the news that the Boarding Hostel is now available as well.  Please see the Conference website for more details.

ConSTANZ 2022

Our delayed Conference promises informative and beneficial workshops, interesting speakers and educational field trips.

If you haven’t already made plans to attend, I urge you to encourage your HOD’s to support your application.

Finally:

It is not long to go until the end of term so may I take this opportunity to wish you all a relaxing and revitalising break.

Kia pai tō koutou rā

Monique Arts

Communications Officer

Past President

Communications Report February 2022

AGM:

STANZ would like to announce the date for the Annual General Meeting (AGM) this year. It will be held Monday April 11.  Times and venue will be announced closer to the time and you are all invited to attend.  Covid Rules at the time may mean we will  need to hold the meeting via Zoom. We had to do this last year and although not ideal, it was successful.  We will keep you informed.

REMITS:

If you wish to have a remit considered for presentation at the upcoming AGM, then the required information must be sent to the STANZ Secretary; Janice Deverick.

Remits must be received by February 25, 2022.

Her email address is [email protected]  

See details for submitting a remit in this link:  STANZ Remit Policy 

CONFERENCE:

As I write, our much-awaited Conference is still happening in Christchurch this year. Should there be any changes, the Conference committee will keep us well informed.

CONSTITUTION:

As required by law, the Executive will be reviewing the Constitution this year. As a result of this process there may be  recommendations for changes to the Constitution.

You will be informed of any proposed changes. These will need to be approved and voted on before they can be enacted.

CHANGE OF DETAILS:

If there have been any changes to your details, or you are a new or leaving technician, please fill in the membership form. This will help keep our records up to date.

You can find the membership form here or go to the website.

SAFETY AND SCIENCE DOCUMENT:

Thank you to all who have taken the time to contribute to the page that was created to record any mistakes, omissions and questions regarding the new Safety And Science Document.

It is unfortunate that there are still errors in this much revised edition. STANZ wants to keep on top of this so if you see anything in the document that is unclear, badly worded or even just plain wrong, please add your concerns to the document. This will help us address all your concerns.

Click here here to go straight to the document or you can fill it out in the password protected section of the website.

KAY MEMMOTT AWARD:

The Kay Memmott Award for Excellence is awarded to a technician to acknowledge their hard work in their field. Be it working hard for other technicians, showing excellence in their endeavours to their colleagues or they may be that person that can be contacted in a hurry for advice.

This person may be someone who goes the extra mile for local technicians – they may organise the local meetings. They may also be active in promoting science outside their schools to local community groups for example.

As this is a Conference Year, we are looking for a deserving recipient for this award.  I invite you to put your thinking caps on for the technician who you think meets all the criteria. Nominations will be opened in Term 2.

PRIVACY POLICY:

STANZ has also been developing a Privacy Policy. This policy will clearly state why we get data from you, how we do it, how it is used, how it is protected and what you can do if you feel your privacy has been breached.  It will be on the website soon and I encourage you to have a read when it does. 

Wishing you all a smooth term despite the trying conditions most of us will face.

If you have any concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact any one of the committee members.

Contact details are available via the website.

Ngā mihi

Monique Arts

STANZ Communications Officer

Communications Report End of Year 2021

Hello everyone and welcome to the last Communications Report for the year. And what a year it has been!

Our Auckland technicians especially, you deserve a huge pat on the back for what have been challenging and unprecedented times.

I’d like to remind you of your Executive Committee for 2021-2023

President – Arwen Heyworth – Onehunga High School, Auckland

Past President – Communications – Monique Arts – John Paul College, Rotorua

Secretary – Janice Deverick  – Alfriston College, Auckland

Treasurer – Jane Lieshout – St Patrick’s College, Wellington

Health and Safety –  Sarah Garner – Kamo High School, Whangarei

Advocacy – Ian de Stigter (Mt Grammar, Auckland) and Sheryl Fitzsimmons (Nelson College For Girls)

Newsletter Editor and Web site Manager – Jasmine Harrison – St Andrew’s College, Christchurch.

A very warm welcome to the new members of the Executive. They add to an already strong and focussed team whose combined skills and specialities will serve us well as we head into 2022 with all its upcoming challenges.

As you know, the new Safety and Science Document has been published in an on line version only.

I encourage you to please take the time to read this and leave any feedback on the google sheet.

Links to both documents are below.

STANZ will endeavour to ensure that any concerns will be acted upon.

Safety and Science Document

Safety and Science Edits – Google Sheets

I also would like to take this opportunity to thank David Cook for his continuing support to Technicians after his retirement. He remained on scitech talk after his retirement as he offered to monitor Accumulated Wisdom for us until a replacement had been found. Although this has not happened as yet, he felt that it was definitely time to move on and he has decided to remove himself from the forum. Thank you, David, for all your wisdom, support and advice over many years. Time to properly retire.

So it just remains for me, on behalf of your Executive Committee to wish you all the best for Christmas and the New Year. Sit back, relax and enjoy the holidays doing what you love doing and we look forward to a fresh and reinvigorated start to 2022.

Meri Kirihimete ki te katoa

Monique Arts

Communications Officer

ConSTANZ21 postponed

Kia Ora,

Unfortunately, due to the recent uncertainty around Covid restrictions, the conference planning committee alongside STANZ have made the hard decision to postpone ConSTANZ 21.
The conference will be held at the same time next year, and we will confirm exact dates as soon as possible.
This decision was made in the best interests of keeping everyone and their schools safe. It was reached following government guidelines, and restrictions for education and gatherings.
We will be in touch with registered delegates shortly around credit and/or refunds. Please be patient as we work through the details around these.
Thank you for your understanding,

The ConSTANZ 2122 Planning Committee

Ian de Stigter’s paper on pay relativity April 2021

School Science Technician and Librarian Pay Relativity to the average hourly wage, 1989-2020

by Ian de Stigter
April 2021

Data from all-sectors ordinary-time average hourly wage data was obtained from the
Quarterly Employment Survey produced by Statistics NZ, and this is compared in the graph
below against the maximum hourly wage indicated for school Science Technicians and
Librarians in the various collective contract pay scales from 1989 to2020. Read more….

Communications Report May 2021

Communications Officer Report for May 2021

I have taken on the role of Communications Officer until the end of the current Executive Term

 

The STANZ Executive met at St. Patrick’s College Wellington at the end of Term One. Here is a summary of decisions and discussions.

 

  • STANZ AGM

This was held on a Zoom Platform and a number of technicians from outside Wellington were in attendance and there were also a couple of local Technicians who attended in person. It included a Zoom Meeting with Chris Walker NZEI.

Chris bought us up to date with progress on our Pay Equity Claim which was lodged last year.

  • STANZ Executive meeting
    1. Helen Jordan from the ConSTANZ21 Organising Committee was present and bought the committee up to date with planning. (You may have noted that the ConSTANZ21 website is up and running and registrations are now open). Members can rest assured that planning for possible CoVID 19 eventualities is in progress. Hand sanitizer will be available at the venue for example. Keep watching scitech talk for details of the various Scholarships that will be available to help members attend the conference.
    2. Executive Elections for 2021-2023. Arwen Heyworth (retiring President) was appointed Returning Officer for this on- line election. Further details will be given as this term proceeds but do consider whether you or a colleague would be willing to stand for the election as there will be a number of vacancies to fill, we also do see the need for a wide geographical spread of members. Feel free to discuss this matter with any current Executive Member should you want more detail
    3. Privacy Policy. STANZ is required to develop a Privacy Policy and as a first step towards this we have appointed Monique Arts (Current Past President) to this role. There will a more formal discussion at the ConSTANZ21 General Meeting but in the short term we would like to mention that members have the right to opt out of any publicity photographs. The conference application form states that your photo may be used and give an opt-out option for this. Also note that any comment you post on Scitech talk may end up in Accumulated Wisdom with your name assigned. Photos may be used in Tech tonic newsletter so there will again be an opt- out option in due course.
    4. There was discussion about the HSNO exception for school laboratories which only applies to areas teaching science. Members need to be aware that this means areas like art, food technology and technology are not part of the Possible Responsibility of the Laboratory manager and that these subjects would have to adhere to the full HSNO regulations. Worksafe have said they would talk to MOE to clarify this issue. Arwen will send specific detail to members clarifying these changes as some lab managers were in charge of these areas previously.
    5. A reminder that STANZ has funding available for specific Cluster Groups or individuals to use for Professional Development opportunities. The details are available from the STANZ Website.
    6. We have decided to have a ‘member’s only’ section of our website to protect our collective intellectual property: look for details of this shortly.

 

  • Finally a reminder about the protocols to be followed by those posting to Scitech talk.
  • Keep the discussion to topics of interest to science technicians.
  • Keep posts to a reasonable length.
  • Be polite and considerate when commenting.
  • If you would like to thank someone, send it to their individual email rather than the group.
  • Do not send or reply to test emails.
  • Do not use icons in your email posts
  • Do not send copyright or paid content through scitechtalk Be aware and respectful of the intellectual property of members posting to scitechtalk
  • If you are unsure about your subscription, contact the Group Administrator, whose address can be found in the footer of all emails from Scitechtalk.
  • Respect the privacy of members and do not post photos or identifying material unless you have checked with the person involved. Be aware that attributed content may appear in Accumulated Wisdom or Tech Tonic unless you specifically ask that you not be identified.

 

 

David Cook

Health & Safety Officer

Acting Communications Officer

STANZ

[email protected]

Communications Bulletin – Members Update Dec 2020

Hi Everyone

 

Your Executive Committee held a face to face meeting on 2nd November 2020, at Saint Patrick’s College, Wellington. All the committee members were able to attend.

 

It was decided that our next AGM will have the option for members to attend remotely via zoom or in person if alert levels allow. Details will be available after the date of the AGM has been announced.

 

David Cook can take on the role as a travelling ambassador. Schools can pay expenses for David to visit and advise on safety issues. STANZ could cover this cost for a cluster visit, or individual schools could apply for short course PD for funding. We recommend David Cook but he is not an official STANZ representative.

 

Next year we will be calling for nominations for members to join the Executive committee. You are welcome to put your hand up if you are a school science technician and have been in the role for at least 1 year.

 

Terry Price

STANZ Communications Officer

President’s Report ConSTANZ19

PRESIDENT’S REPORT  – AGM – Thursday October 10, 2019

CONSTANZ 19 

 

It has been a privilege for me to be your President during this milestone 10th ConSTANZ Conference and a great source of pride to be part of a Committee that has come so far since its inception and humble beginnings in 2001. STANZ (Inc) has grown as a professional organisation that informs and educates its members. I am sure the late Peter Spratt of the Royal Society would be proud of the Association we have become.

I thank the hardworking and dedicated conference team, under the guidance of Jane Lieshout and Lesley Stephens, who have brought ConSTANZ19 to life for us in Wellington.

As was in the beginning, we still have challenges, from pay disparity discussions, to Code of Practice frustrations and working conditions. However, as the years have passed, the voice of STANZ (Inc) has grown considerably stronger enabling us to have active participation in discussions that are relevant to us. 

It was very pleasing to have so many people stand for The Executive this year allowing us to hold an election.

It must be said that the Executive was disappointed in the low number of people who voted. The voting process that we used was simple and quick, yet still less than half of the registered members had their say. 

Nevertheless, the standard of nominees was exceptional, and we have a new Committee that is strong and focussed. It is especially pleasing to see continuing South Island representation.

As happy as I am to gain new and enthusiastic members to the Executive, it does sadden me to lose the talents of both Ann Brimmer and Sheryl Fitzsimons this year. Both ladies have made invaluable contributions to STANZ (Inc) and their presence will be missed. Ann has been editor extraordinaire of Tech Tonic and in her time as editor has built the newsletter up to an exceptionally high standard. Sheryl farewells us as Past President, having served a term as President from 2015-2017.  Prior to her Presidency she served as Treasurer and has been a committee member since 2013. Sheryl has made valuable contributions to the running of STANZ(Inc) and has streamlined many processes. Sheryl has had her finger on the pulse on many governing issues. I thank you both for you years of voluntary service and wish you well in your ‘retirements’.

STANZ has been delighted to have been able to increase the number of scholarships available to its members and we had a record number of applicants this year, especially for the fully funded ‘STANZ Get Me To ConSTANZ’ scholarship. Congratulations to all the worthy recipients. 

The process of re-writing the Constitution has been finalised and will be ratified by the members at this AGM. It has been a demanding task but the results will see us better in line with pending government regulations.

Pay equity campaigns discussions are continuing and STANZ will keep you informed of any progress for Science Technicians as it comes to hand.

Regrettably, there is still no final word on the re-write of ‘Safety in Science’. Promised deadlines have come and gone with regrettably no final date set. Our Advocacy and Health and Safety Officer, Arwen Heyworth, has been heavily involved with the re-write and has tried to ensure that our technician  needs have been met in the new document. The writers have handed in their sections and the document has been passed on to proof readers and editors. Once it has been proofed, it will be passed onto the Ministry of Education and WorkSafe for approval. All this is likely to take some time and a 2019 release date now looks very unlikely.

We hope the new document will stand up to the task.

Issues with chemical tracking and the lack of reticulated gas in new buildings have also arisen sharply this year. Our Health and Safety Officers, Jane and Arwen, have dealt with many of these and we look to provide clarity to both those issues in the next term. 

Finally, as my tenure as President winds up, I would like to thank the Executive for their support, wisdom and encouragement over the last two years.  I would also like to thank those of you who have emailed me to say thanks or even just hello. Your words were always very welcomed and definitely appreciated.

I have learnt much and have thoroughly enjoyed my time as President and I look forward to working with the new Executive in the Past President role.

I know the new Executive Committee will continue their high standard of work and commitment to you, the members of STANZ, working with you to improve the conditions, recognition and standing of all School Science Technicians.

 

Nga mihi

Monique Arts.

Important Code of Practice announcement

STANZ has been working with the Ministry of Education, WorkSafe, NZASE and a number of other interested parties on the issue of the new Hazardous Substances Regulations.

At a meeting in Wellington during the October holidays we were able to secure a continuance for our Code of Practice for School Exempt Laboratories past the 1st of December this year. This is due to the fact that the new guidance and compliance documents will not be ready by then. However, due to changes in the new Hazardous Substance Regulations linked to the new Health and Safety at Work Act 2015, schools will no longer be able to use adherence to the CoP as a legal defence in the event that an incident occurs. Under HSWA 2015 EVERYONE in a workplace is considered to be responsible for health and safety not just the PCBU (employer) and must take all practicable steps to prevent an incident from occurring. Other than that the new regulations are pretty similar to HSNO.

This continuance means that you can continue to use the CoP (and the guide to the CoP) as a guide of best practice for hazardous substance management.

The Ministry has released an official statement today: http://education.govt.nz/ministry-of-education/specific-initiatives/health-and-safety/news-updates-for-health-and-safety/

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Removal of the Code of Practice for School Exempt Laboratories

Hazardous Substances Regulations come into effect on 1 December. At this time, the Hazardous Substances Codes of Practice will no longer be applicable.

For school laboratories, the Ministry of Education is working with WorkSafe New Zealand to develop guidance and compliance documents to replace the Code of Practice for School Exempt Laboratories. Until they are released, the Ministry of Education and WorkSafe suggest schools continue to use this Code,  as well as the Ministry of Education’s guidance to the Code, (which outlines your responsibilities as a board) as their guidance documents for hazardous substance management.

The Ministry of Education is working with a number of organisations to ensure that schools and their Boards are supported in complying with the regulations.

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Don’t forget to utilize our safety documents page: //stanz.nzase.org.nz/safety-documents/

We will  be keeping you updated as things change.

ConSTANZ17

ConSTANZ17 website

 

Below are some handouts from presentations at ConSTANZ17:

 

The Universe via Science and Engineering Technologies – TN Chan

 

Camera Obscura

 

Van der Graaff demonstration – David Cook

 

Hazardous Substances Management – Hazchem Services     Word Inventory   Excel Inventory

 

​​ New Technicians – Monique Arts

 

Get Your Cellphones Out – Nick Major

 

Glass Bending

 

​And here are some photos, courtesy of Ann and Greg Brimmer, Monique Arts, Sheryl Fitzsimons, Arwen Heyworth and Andrea Paynter