Barry McFarlane

A dedicated teacher, a committed unionist.

Barry’s commitment to his profession was underpinned by the inseparable connection between the professional and industrial arms of the profession.

Barry recognised and spent a lifetime pursuing the importance of a profession that is respected and resourced to undertake its critical work for the students and therefore the broader community.

Barry was a well-loved, highly respected and tremendously regarded teacher, having been the recipient of significant teaching awards.

In many respects he was a legendary figure of The Friends School in Hobart.

Barry was committed to improving and supporting the working-life of his comrades at school.

For over two decades he was the honorary Secretary of the Tasmanian Independent Schools Teachers Association (TISTA), a task that took considerable time and commitment on top of his day-to-day duties and responsibilities as a classroom teacher; a task that was often unacknowledged; and one that took him away from home on many occasions to attend meetings.

The Independent Education Union of Australia is strengthened through the commitment of Barry, and we also thank his wife Pam for sharing her husband with us.

Barry’s work for his members extended beyond the independent schools of Tasmania and included his contribution to the federal union’s work. Barry attended his first federal meeting of the IEUA’s predecessor body – Independent Teachers Federation of Australia – in February 1986 and remained a faithful servant to his colleagues through until 2010.

Barry’s work federally helped build a national body of education unions. He valued the work he was doing and saw a tremendous future for our Unions. Barry had an extraordinary generosity of spirit and selflessness and, because TISTA was a small union in numbers, but mighty in resolve, Barry for the most part had to do everything himself, and the unfailing support and help from Pam, to complete tasks that most of us have staff to help with.

Above all, Barry was a man of principle. A man that the trade union movement in Tasmania was lucky to have as one of its own.

Thank you for your service and friendship Barry.

Vale Barry McFarlane

Chris Watt, Federal Secretary, IEUA