Federal MP Andrew Laming.
Federal MP Andrew Laming.

MP Andrew Laming's teachers post sparks backlash

FEDERAL government MP Andrew Laming has sparked a backlash after making a social media post about the working hours of Queensland teachers.

In an unprompted post on his official Facebook page, the Liberal National Party MP asked: "Are teachers back at work this week, or are they 'lesson planning' from home? Let me know exactly".

Nearly 200 replies have been made, with many critical of Mr Laming's seemingly negative implication.

"They work harder and longer than any politician and they don't rip off the taxpayer or retire on a huge pension. I take it you must home school your children if you don't know when the holidays end," wrote one reply.

Another follower threw the question back at Mr Laming.

"So when should they plan their lessons Andrew? Is parliament in session or are you 'working in the electorate'?".

Do teachers have too much time off?

This poll ended on 26 January 2017.

Current Results

Yes. Their holidays should be cut back

35%

No. They work hard. I wouldn't want their job

16%

No. They have to do a lot of stuff out of school hours

35%

Don't know. But they work a lot harder than MPs

12%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Queensland Teachers Union vice-president Sam Pidgeon said Mr Laming's comment was disappointing.

"I can let Andrew Laming know that this is yet another example of how out of touch he is with working people," Ms Pidgeon told AAP.

"There'll be a lot of teachers very disappointed that he decided to make such a flippant remark."

But Mr Laming claims he wasn't trying to spark a controversy with the question. "That page is just what we call a "discussion platform", which is basically for all the people who don't live in my electorate," the Redlands-based Bowman MP told AAP.

"So I just throw questions up there and try and get people talking."

Mr Laming admits he hasn't read the comments on the post and rarely checks the replies to the posts he makes.

The post was later removed.

It's not the first time Mr Laming has copped a backlash for his social media use after it was revealed he spent a weekend last year arguing with others on the "Simpsons Against the Liberals" Facebook page, which posts memes critical of the Coalition using stills from popular TV show The Simpsons.

He was also filmed skolling beer while upside down at an Australia Day party in 2014.

Queensland state schools reopen on Monday, January 16, with most teachers doing planning and professional development before students return for classes from Monday, January 23.



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