Providing public education

Strengthening support for teaching and learning excellence in every classroom

Strengthening support for teaching and learning excellence in every classroom

We provided staff with opportunities to grow their professional capabilities to raise the standard of teaching and impact on learning. We promoted careers in public education to build the supply of high quality staff applying for positions in our schools.

The Quality Teaching Strategy (QTS), launched in October 2022, is our position on effective teaching and the aspects of school culture which support improved teaching practices. The strategy articulates the supports to strengthen the effectiveness of classroom teaching and whole school practice, and is based on research and developed by the profession.

The QTS aims to strengthen the quality of teaching across the system to support progress and achievement for every student, and includes 3 new supports:

  • Teaching for Impact provides guidance to teachers about what constitutes effective teaching practice, providing a common language to improve student outcomes and bringing together the elements of good teaching in one place. The Teaching for Impact overview outlines what effective teachers believe, know and do. Supporting resources elaborate on the what, why and how of the elements identified as having significant impact on student outcomes. The overview and resources are accessible online for all Western Australian public school staff.
  • The School Culture Survey is a tool to support principals to assess and identify the aspects of their school’s culture needed for optimal quality teaching. Principals can access the survey on the school survey website on our intranet.
  • The Leading Cultures of Teaching Excellence professional learning program supports principals and leadership teams to lead a high performance and development culture in their school. In 2023, 40 principals commenced the program.

A core component of the QTS is a strengthened profession‑led model of support built around instructional coaches and lead schools. The coaches and lead schools will work with schools to support the implementation and sustainability of evidence‑based effective teaching strategies. In March 2023, 25 lead schools were selected to support the implementation of the QTS and Teaching for Impact, and will commence system support in Semester 2, 2023.

We provide support to early career teachers through the Graduate Teacher Induction program. Support includes professional learning for graduate teachers and access to an in‑class coaching program. In 2022–23, 4,723 teachers completed components of the professional learning modules and 635 accessed the in‑class coaching program. All support is aligned to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers.

Teachers who provide and support high quality teaching in schools are recognised through our level 3 classroom teacher and senior teacher programs.

In 2022, 97 exemplary teachers achieved level 3 classroom teacher status and 880 teachers became senior teachers. Senior teachers are experienced teachers committed to high quality teaching and ongoing professional learning.

The Leap program responds to emerging Department and local school workforce needs by qualifying existing teachers in specialist subjects of need through graduate certificates at local universities, and micro‑credentials in specialist areas. In 2022–23, Leap trained 302 teachers in secondary mathematics, design and technology, English, education support, science, humanities and social sciences, supporting students with autism spectrum disorder, lower secondary languages, agriculture, school psychology and Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.

In 2023, we continued providing funding to facilitate industry work placements to ensure teachers and trainers have contemporary industry skills relevant to the training they are delivering. The program, an election commitment of the state government, supports teachers and trainers to deliver high quality vocational education and training that meets the needs of industry.

We acknowledged schools and collective excellence in both whole school leadership and in teaching and learning through the annual WA Education Awards.

An attraction and retention incentive was provided to new and existing eligible teachers and school administrators at 48 remote and regional schools, as part of the Public Sector Commissioner’s Instruction: Temporary Regional Attraction and Retention Incentives. The $12.4 million package applied to schools experiencing significant recruitment pressures identified in our Regional Incentive Framework. Payments varied between $5,000 and $17,000 per employee, paid in 2 instalments for 2023.

An attraction and retention incentive was also paid to eligible teachers and school administrators at 59 education support centres and schools with a $5,000 payment in 2023.

An international teacher recruitment campaign was launched in New Zealand in September 2022 and in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland in January 2023. The campaign aimed to provide an additional supply of secondary and education support teachers for Western Australian regional public schools. The attraction package includes fully funded relocation, visa sponsorship and a pathway to permanent residency. As at 30 June 2023, 28 teachers have been recruited to commence in regional secondary teacher positions.

In 2022–23, through the Pre‑Service Development Program, we supported:

  • 168 professional experience placements undertaken by pre‑service teaching and school psychology students in regional areas. Support included an orientation, followed by professional learning and networking opportunities delivered centrally and locally through regional pre‑service teacher hubs. Stipends and travel allowances were provided.
  • 84 pre‑service teachers to complete short Horizons courses to upskill in areas of workforce demand such as mathematics, physical science, digital technologies and education support.

Through the Internships for Pre‑Service Teachers project, 32 pre‑service secondary teachers were supported financially to undertake an internship in a metropolitan or regional public school. This project aims to increase capacity and work readiness by delivering practical learning that integrates theory into classroom practice. Applications were accepted from high performing pre‑service teachers in all learning areas to enhance teacher supply across Western Australia’s public schools.

As at June 2023, 62 secondary science, technology and mathematics pre‑service teachers were supported with stipends while completing their professional experience in a metropolitan public school, with the aim of them accepting employment at a Western Australian public school.

In 2023, 43 Teach for Australia associates commenced teaching in 16 regional and 13 metropolitan secondary schools, joining the 31 associates teaching in 18 schools in their second year of the program. Associates are high‑calibre graduates who work in eligible schools for 2 years while completing a Master of Teaching (Secondary).

The pilot On Country Teacher Education program, developed with and delivered by Curtin University, continued to support Aboriginal allied professionals in our schools to complete a Bachelor of Education (Primary Education). In 2023, 11 staff are studying part‑time while continuing to work in their existing roles.

In 2022, we awarded 2 Bob Hawke Aboriginal teacher scholarships to support aspiring Aboriginal secondary teachers to complete their teaching qualification. We launched the 2023 scholarship program and will award a further 2 scholarships later in the year.

We continued to arrange and subsidise housing to attract and retain staff in our rural, regional and remote public schools. In 2022–23, $78.8 million was paid in rent for 2,265 properties occupied by our staff and mostly owned or leased by Government Regional Officers’ Housing ($73.6 million for 2,254 properties in 2021–22). Of this, we subsidised 76% (75% in 2021–22).