Skip to Content

Mandi Ostaszewskyj

"Teaching in rural or remote schools is lots of fun, change, great memories, fabulous opportunities to try new things in your classrooms and taking on roles that you wouldn’t have the opportunity to have in the city."

 

As Deputy Principal, I have responsibility for many portfolios within the school. My daily tasks start with checking emails, my to do list and working through these. I work with staff, students and parents/guardians to ensure our students are achieving their best and we are providing the tools they need to support them. Part of my role is to support teachers to be the best that they can be, whether it is through modelling, coaching or just informal conversations. 

As the largest public school in Geraldton, with over 550 students from Kindy to Year 6, I work with a very diverse range of students from different cultures and backgrounds. 

I grew up in Perth attending at my local public primary and high school. After completing high school I completed a diploma in child care at TAFE. I started working in Child Care and then decided that I wanted to go to university to study teaching. I remember being in Year 2 when I thought to myself I want to be a teacher when I grew up.

I started teaching in 2005 at Roleystone Primary in a Year 1 class. I'd always wanted to teach Aboriginal students so decided to go for a rural position in the following year. I had a friend who was in Meekatharra who inspired me to give it a go. I spent 5 years in Meekatharra making many great friends and my career took a direction I never thought it would. From Meekatharra, I went to a remote position as Principal at Sandstone. During my time at Sandstone I took maternity leave and followed my husband around the state with his career in teaching also. We moved to Port Hedland, Marble Bar, One Arm Point, Wickham, Tom Price and then to Geraldton where I became a program co-ordinator for the Midwest Engagement Centre before applying for the position I’m currently at, Waggrakine for the past two years.

Teaching in rural or remote schools is lots of fun, change, great memories, fabulous opportunities to try new things in your classrooms and taking on roles that you wouldn’t have the opportunity to have in the city.

The types of characteristics and skills you need to teach rural or remote are determination, a passion for education, caring, have a bag of tricks, willing to give anything a go and giving up is not a choice.

Financially it can set up for the future, the career opportunities are endless and if you are prepared to go and get out there, you’ll get to see our beautiful country while getting paid.  I’ve made make lifelong friends and have great memories and a great social life.

My three pieces of advice to anyone considering a career in a rural or remote school are:

  • Just go, what have you got to lose?
  • Be prepared to surprise yourself.
  • Go with an open mind, be open to thinking outside the box and try new things.