Saturday, April 20, 2024

$12m plan to entice teachers to remote schools in 2023

The WA Government has announced a $12.4 million plan to retain and attract teachers to 48 of the state’s remote and regional public schools for the 2023 school year.

Education and Training Minister, Sue Ellery said the initiative would be implemented for the 2023 school year to provide incentives to teachers and school leaders to work in locations where demand for staff is the greatest.

“While Western Australia has done a fantastic job of ensuring there is a teacher in front of every classroom to date, the numbers are getting tighter and these 48 schools are those most likely to be impacted by any teacher shortfall in 2023,” Minister Ellery said.

“Attracting and retaining teachers is essential to ensure that every Western Australian student has access to a high-quality education, regardless of their location.

“This new initiative adds to a range of strategies that the State Government has already implemented to increase and maintain the number of suitably qualified teachers in Western Australian public schools and support those with the greatest attraction and retention needs.”

The Department of Education has developed a Regional Incentive Framework to identify schools with the greatest need for teachers in 2023, where a one-off payment will be offered to both new and existing teachers and school leaders.

Payments will vary from $5,000 to $17,000, depending on location, with a percentage paid upon commencement of employment and the remainder paid to those staff who remain at the school throughout 2023.

Teachers who are eligible for the payments will be able to receive them on top of existing incentives for teachers working in rural and remote areas, meaning they could receive up to $30,000 in addition to their salary for working in the identified schools in 2023.

While these new immediate measures target WA’s hardest-to-staff schools, the State Government says it is continuing to work with the Commonwealth to address the national teacher shortage.

This includes development of a National Teacher Workforce Action Plan with Education Ministers from around the country and an extra $328 million in funding announced by the Federal Government for associated actions aimed at attracting, training and retaining educators.

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