The number of errors made by the Ministry of Education's
Novopay system has leapt from 490 to 3227 in two weeks.
During question time a fortnight ago, Associate Minister of
Education Craig Foss said 100 teachers were either not paid
or underpaid during the last pay cycle and 390 teachers were
Today in question time that figure was raised to 3227.
The figure includes a backlog of mistakes with the first two
pay cycles including salary assessments for people joining
payroll, changes of address or bank account, and extra
allowances for bus controllers, management units, maternity
leave and after-school coaching.
Mr Foss said all errors would be resolved by the end of the
Labour's education spokeswoman Nanaia Mahuta called on the
ministry or its payroll provider Talent2 to compensate
schools for the time and money they had spent fixing payroll
mistakes resulting from the Novopay system.
Mrs Mahuta also called for teachers to be compensated for any
penalties they incurred from not being paid.
Mr Foss said the ministry had not decided on if it would
compensate schools or teachers for the costs involved with
mistakes on the Novopay system.
"We're focusing on making sure Novopay is implemented and
operating correctly, as intended and as contracted to with
Primary school principals started invoicing the Ministry of
Education today for extra hours staff have spent focused on
sorting out errors.
And principals at schools in Auckland and Wellington say they
will refuse to take on any extra work from the ministry until
the problems with Novopay have been resolved.
Sacred Heart principal Lisl Prendergast said one of her staff
members had been overpaid by $9000 and she knew of two
schools that opted not to deal with the ministry.
"There are two colleges I know of where people are very
unhappy, and in order to protect the executive officer the
principal has said simply 'don't deal with the ministry until
it's sorted - just get on with the rest of your job'."
Auckland Area Council principals' reference group members
Malcolm Milner and Frances Nelson said principals wanted to
prioritise leading teaching and learning over administration.
"Because of the hours spent on the Novopay shambles we must
prioritise work that is about directly supporting student
learning," they said.
Secretary for Education Lesley Longstone said Talent2 would
be providing training to school staff to help address issues
with its new payroll system. The ministry would also extend
its Novopay road show which was launched last Friday to train
schools in its use.
"We are also aware schools may have additional audit costs
related to the introduction of the new system and we will
provide support as appropriate," she said.