The Wheatbelt region is a short drive from Perth with a diverse landscape, best known for its agriculture and close-knit rural communities.
Known as the ‘heartland’ of Western Australia the Wheatbelt region sets itself apart with its down-to-earth lifestyle, generational farming families, and a strong sense of community and belonging.
The region has an abundance of natural resources with endless farmland, fields of wildflowers, charming pioneering towns, and large stretches of nature reserves where flora and fauna unique to the area flourish.
Located 2-3 hours drive inland and south of Perth, the Wheatbelt education region is well-positioned with approximately 59,000 people across 200 towns and communities.
The Wheatbelt is home to 69 public schools and 8,715 students from a range of socio-economic backgrounds with families likely to be involved in agriculture, forestry or mining.
Class and school sizes tend to be smaller in Wheatbelt schools and often include multi-aged groups, with siblings and extended family members attending the same school, sometimes over generations.
The Noongar and Gubrun people are the traditional custodians and original inhabitants of the lands in the region. Wheatbelt schools play a vital role in embedding Aboriginal culture, language and knowledge and work closely with Aboriginal students, their families, and communities to create culturally responsive learning environments.
Secondary teachers frequently teach across two or more learning areas and will supervise younger students when on duty. Part-time work is quite common in Wheatbelt schools, with teachers often having their own children enrolled at the school - even in their own classes.
The region has a range of opportunities in agriculture education and related trades training programs located in specialised colleges and schools.
Wheatbelt schools have a mixture of long-term staff, with deep ties to the local community, and newer arrivals to teaching positions and leadership roles. Wheatbelt towns are often heavily involved in their local schools and the close-knit community is very supportive of school events and sporting competitions, often volunteering or hosting fundraising activities for students. Students across age groups often know each other well and look out for each other, socialising outside of school.
Living in the Wheatbelt offers the regional teaching experience without the isolation and has a growing economy driven by mining, agriculture and renewable energy industries. You are only a few hours drive to Perth with easy access to major town centres in bordering regions. Larger towns with multiple schools often service surrounding communities and have a broad range of retail, health, childcare and community facilities.
Housing is provided and in some locations is subsidised, through the Government Regional Officers Housing (GROH) program although there is limited availability in Northam. Teachers may also be eligible for additional allowances and subsidies depending on the school.
Sport is a major aspect of country life and high-quality facilities including recreation and aquatic centres, courts and ovals provide social and competitive opportunities for all ages. Taking an active interest in local sporting activities and joining the local team in any capacity whether it is playing, coaching or refereeing is a proven way to quickly build relationships with students, parents and the community.
Granite outcrops, tranquil woodlands and rivers, salt lakes and pools, historic sites and museums, walking trails and open spaces, the Wheatbelt offers a variety of activities to suit everyone.
The region features a number of natural attractions and nature reserves with plentiful opportunities for bushwalking, bird and wildflower watching, four-wheel driving and camping out under the stars. Intersected by 6 key transport routes the Wheatbelt is a great starting point to explore surrounding regions and WA’s many destinations.
During spring the area comes alive with colourful rolling fields and for camping enthusiasts, it’s possible to camp at many of the nature reserves. It is home to the world-famous Wave Rock and other large monoliths and for night owls it is a stargazer’s delight.
Many community activities are held throughout the year including markets, annual shows and field days, bush races, motor shows, theatre, art and music events.