Teachers owed $12m thanks to Novopay

CHARLEY MANN AND JODY O'CALLAGHAN
Last updated 05:00 02/02/2013

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The much-maligned Novopay system now owes almost $12 million to teachers who have not been paid.

The latest figures comes from the monthly Novopay debt ledger, released under the Official Information Act.

It reveals that as of January 6, 14,470 teachers were owed about $11.8 million in wages.

The Ministry of Education has been forced to pay out almost $2.5m in manual payments, which are made when the Novopay system fails to pay teachers and their school requests a manual payment.

Schools have paid almost $700,000 in manual payments to staff to compensate for Novopay.

However, 532 teachers have been overpaid by more than $600,000.

Of that amount, about $336,000 has not been paid back to Novopay.

PAY ROUND 'SHAMBLES'

The latest school pay round is Novopay's worst yet, a Lower Hutt principal says.

Sacred Heart College principal Lisl Prendergast said yesterday her staff were frantically busy trying to correct new payroll glitches in time.

Told they had until the end of yesterday to report back on any problems that needed fixing before payday on Wednesday, staff were settling in to work until about 8pm.

"It is a complete shambles. Far worse than ever - it's a shocker."

By 3.30pm, staff had already found 10 problems - and that was only for the management team.

They were prepared for far more among the teaching and support staff. It would take a long time to go through the report to discover new glitches, she said.

Advance warning that the pay round would be bad from "fix-it man" Steven Joyce did not make it okay, she said.

"What really annoys me is the amount of work that's had to happen.

"And it's completely bizarre in that none of it makes sense."

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