New employment conditions agreement for educational staff in Caribbean Netherlands

Last week representatives of the Public Entities, school boards, trade unions and the educational staff of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba signed a new employment conditions agreement.

It has been laid down in the new agreement that salaries were raised by 4.2%. This pay rise will come into effect retroactively on 1 September 2021. In addition, educational staff will receive a single gross lump-sum grant of $500 pro-rata for anyone who was in employment on 1 September 2021 and is still or was in employment on 1 March 2022. For St. Eustatius and Saba this grant will also be supplemented with the Windward Allowance (in Dutch: Bovenwindtoelage) or Equalisation Contribution (in Dutch: Vereveningsbijdrage).

The new agreement applies to both educational staff and support staff, and covers the period 1 January 2021 up to and including 31 December 2023. Between the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023 it will be determined whether there is leeway for further wage development.

In addition, a decision will be made in 2022 on the use of funds from the National Education Programme (NEP; in Dutch:  Nationaal Programma Onderwijs (NPO) for the recovery and development of education during and after corona.

In 2022 and 2023 it will also be agreed how the funds for the labor market-related allowance will be distributed. These funds have been made available from the NEP for education and development which is/has become necessary due to corona.

With regard to the pension plan and the disability pension, the previously agreed arrangements for civil servants will also apply to educational staff.

For the duration of this new agreement, the parties will also work on further professionalization of participation. There is an intention to expand the Dutch Schools Participation Act (in Dutch: Wet medezeggenschap scholen) to the schools of the Caribbean Netherlands. As part of the intended further professionalization, the participation councils of the schools in the Caribbean Netherlands will also be given consent and advisory powers.

And in conclusion, employment conditions consultation will also undergo further professionalization during the duration of the new agreement.


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