The NSW Government attempts to fix the teacher shortages and recruit the thousands of additional teachers the state needs are failing with new figures showing only two teachers have been recruited from interstate and overseas in a year.
Figures provided to Parliament show that the only program the government has to recruit classroom-ready teachers will deliver two STEM teachers during Term 4, more than a year after the $14 million program was announced.
NSW Teachers Federation president Angelo Gavrielatos said the government needed to address the real cause of the shortages – unsustainable workloads and uncompetitive salaries.
We need urgent action on workloads and salaries, not long-shots which cost millions and will never deliver the number of teachers we need, he said.
Across NSW students in public and private schools are missing lessons every day because of a lack of teachers.
The number of vacant teaching positions increased by 67 per cent in a year and one in four secondary teachers are required to teach subjects they didn’t study at university.
The number of young teachers leaving has jumped to a 13 year high and research conducted by a parliamentary committee shows 60 per cent of teachers are looking to leave the profession in the next five years
The Education Minister says we need 3,800 additional teachers, above normal recruitment, by 2027. When these two arrive, it will be 3,798.
Mr Gavrielatos said the Federation had written to the Premier calling for the government to abandon attempts to impose a new award at 2.53% per annum for three years on October 12 in the Industrial Relations Commission.
Delivering a real wage cut to teachers will only make it harder to recruit and retain the teachers we need. Teachers are working 60 hours a week and the government’s plan will only reduce that by one hour a week.
We have called on the Premier to sit down and negotiate an agreement that will help NSW fix the teacher shortages and ensure we can recruit and retain teachers.
So far we have heard nothing from him.