Christian Sector Addressing Teacher Shortages

Christian Schools Australia

Christian schools and Christian Higher Education Providers (HEPs) are actively working with innovative solutions to address teacher shortages.

‘We welcome Minister Clare’s Issues Paper on Teacher Workforce Shortages’, said Mark Spencer, Director of Public Policy at Christian Schools Australia, ‘and both Christian schools and Christian Higher Education Providers look forward to working with governments to address these challenges’.

‘Demand for teacher trainee positions across our “teaching school hubs” was more than ten times the available places’, said Associate Professor David Hastie of Alphacrucis University College, ‘with an average ATAR of candidates far higher than in the standard trainee teacher programmes. The hubs are growing at a rapid rate across five states, and all without government subsidies’.

‘These high quality entrants are attracted by the innovative approach to teacher training we offer, and we are currently seeing an incredible 95% retention rate’, he said.

Elsewhere, Christian schools in regional Queensland are coming together to investigate collaboration and cooperation with Christian HEPs to meet their teacher needs.

‘Schools in regional and rural areas need to be active participants in developing the teachers of tomorrow, partnering with tertiary bodies’, said Stephen Babbage, Principal of Trinity College in Gladstone, ‘representatives from Christian Heritage College are very keen to see how they can work with our cluster of 12 regional schools on tailored local solutions’.

This regional partnership would build on existing Embedded Practice teacher education courses offered by Christian Heritage College and Morling College across Queensland, New South Wales, Western Australia and the ACT.

In South Australia, Tabor College is launching a new program to support and partner with faith-based schools where students gain valuable experience working as education assistants while undertaking a blended teacher training program.

‘Christian schools continue to be the fastest growing of all schooling sectors’, Mr Spencer said, ‘so Christian schools are very conscious of the need for increased number of teachers’.

‘Christian schools are themselves already looking for innovative solutions, and Christian HEPs are actively engaged in delivering innovative approaches to deliver high quality teaching graduates’.

‘We are calling on those engaged in the emergency workforce summit tomorrow to ensure that a diversity of solutions are supported by governments to address these challenges’.

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