Pay plus or minus does not add up

Last updated 05:00 21/12/2012
paul drummond
New Zealand Principal's Federation president Paul Drummond

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A Nelson school teacher aide whose bizarre end-of-year payslip included payrates ranging from $1426 an hour to negative $5200 an hour says Novopay must have schizophrenia.

The strange pay breakdown is the latest example of the troubled new payroll system, introduced in August, where some school staff were paid nothing, and others accidentally paid too much.

In a recent New Zealand Principals' Federation (NZPF) nationwide survey of more than 900 schools, 83 per cent reported that at least one staff member was being paid incorrectly by the Ministry of Education's new payroll system. In November that figure was 59.6 per cent.

NZPF president Paul Drummond said the system was fundamentally flawed, and the ministry should reinstate payroll support staff for each school, while specialist technicians were brought in to fix Novopay, he said.

At Nelson's Hampden Street School, teacher aide Grace Saunders said she had an end-of-year payslip that included references to her being paid at an $800 an hour payrate, a $1426.667 an hour payrate, and a minus $5200 per hour pay rate.

"Novopay has schizophrenia, it makes no sense at all," Ms Saunders said. She thought the overall pay that entered her bank account was correct, but it was hard to tell as this was her first year working at the school.

"We can't even check it because it makes so little sense."

Her main concern was that if she had been overpaid she would owe the ministry.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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