The SAOU believes:
- In the supremacy of quality education as a powerful agent of change in the world; and that
- High quality education is the indisputable right of every learner within an equal, nonracial, non-discriminatory education system.
To realise this vision the Union strives towards:
- The highest professionalization of all educators;
- The continual improvement of all aspects of working life in the education sector.
- The SAOU is a politically independent Union built on the principle of freedom, equality and respect for fundamental human rights, in order to enhance and protect the individual and collective interest of its members within any existing or future labour relations dispensation and assure the delivery of quality education to the learners in their care.
To that end the Union:
- Manages relationships between employees and employers;
- Opposes any form of unfair discrimination in education based on race, gender, ethnicity, political or religious beliefs;
- Forms alliances with national as well as international organisations that share the same value system, principles and goals as the Union;
- Provides in-service and further training to fully support educators in their professional accountability to guide and prepare learners to become responsible citizens of a democratic state.