Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia Annual Report 2020–21

Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia

Logo for Government of Western Australia next to the logo for Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia.


Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia Annual Report 2020–21

This annual report reflects the operations of the Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia in regulating the registration of teachers and accrediting initial teacher education programs.



Letter of transmittal


Ms Lisa Rodgers
Director General
Department of Education

Dear Ms Rodgers

In accordance with section 114 of the Teacher Registration Act 2012 (WA), I am pleased to submit the annual report of the Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia, for the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021, for inclusion in the annual report of the Department of Education.

Yours sincerely

Signature of TRBWA's Chairperson, Margaret Collins.

Margaret Collins
Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia

20 August 2021


As I reflect on the last 12 months and consider the challenges brought about by the global pandemic, I am heartened by the community response and most particularly the dedication and resilience of our teaching profession to ensure that students can continue to learn.

I am pleased to report that in general terms, the operational impacts of COVID-19 on Board operations have been minimised. Flowing from decisions made in the previous reporting period, the Board continued to implement regulatory relief for teachers, including extending the expiry date of all registrations, giving additional time to teachers to renew their registration. In addition, the Board provided greater flexibility for the conduct of practicum placements for pre-service teachers completing their initial teacher education courses in 2020.

During periods of lockdown, the Board ensured that teacher registration applications continued to be processed and the customer service centre remained staffed to provide ongoing support to teachers and applicants.

Even without the added impacts of the pandemic, it has been an eventful and busy period for the Board and its operations.

Our membership underwent some change during the year. I would like to welcome two new members to the Board, both experienced registered teachers and emerging leaders within their respective sectors – Ms Casey Bakunowicz, a primary teacher with Catholic Education Western Australia at time of appointment and Ms Emily Donders, a secondary teacher with the Department of Education. We said farewell to two Board members whose terms expired – Mr Peter Collins, an inaugural Board member and Mr Jeremy Bruse. On behalf of the Board and secretariat, I would like to congratulate Ms Bakunowicz and Ms Donders on their appointments and give special acknowledgement and thanks to Mr Collins and Mr Bruse for their valuable and significant contribution to the work of the Board.

The renewal of teacher registration is a legislative requirement and for fully registered teachers this occurs every five years. About every three and half years, the Board experiences an eighteen month ‘spike’ in renewal numbers associated with those teachers who were first registered between 2004 and 2005. Between September 2020 and March 2022, the Board will renew about 30,000 registrations. At the end of this reporting period the Board had finalised about 30 per cent of these.

The Board’s vision is to be a quality and contemporary regulator of the WA teaching profession that operates in the best interests of children. In order to achieve this vision, we continued to support the development of suitable digital solutions to service the needs of our stakeholders. In particular, significant work has been undertaken in the planning and initial development phase of a replacement for the ICT system that underpins the Board’s registration operations and customer facing online services. This project is being undertaken in concert with the ongoing ‘business as usual’ development work to improve online services and ensure the needs of applicants and individual teachers are supported.

In the interests of improving the mobility of the Australian workforce, an intergovernmental agreement to introduce a scheme of Automatic Mutual Recognition of occupational registrations was signed in the reporting period and amendments were made to the Mutual Recognition Act 1992 (Cth). The Board has been monitoring these developments and, looking forward, will be engaged in addressing the implementation issues associated with this reform.

The Board continues to collaboratively engage with a number of State Government agencies and other authorities that have a focus on the interests of children. This includes the Department of Education, Catholic Education Western Australia and the Association of Independent Schools of Western Australia, as well as the Department of Communities, the Commissioner for Children and Young People and the Western Australia Police Force.

I would like to acknowledge the Western Australian higher education providers, national authorities with whom we work, and our regulatory counterparts around Australia and in New Zealand. The Board, represented by the Director, has taken a lead role as the convenor of the Australasian teacher regulatory authorities (ATRA). This includes strong engagement and collaboration with the Australian Institute of Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL). Several projects of national significance are continuing related to the registration of teachers, child safety and the accreditation of initial teacher education programs.

The Board is provided secretariat support by the Department of Education. I extend my thanks to Ms Lisa Rodgers, Director General, for the continued support provided by the Department to the Board. This has been most notable in the relocation of the Teacher Registration directorate to the Department’s East Perth office, providing better access to secure established system infrastructure and support.

I would also like to acknowledge and thank the Director and all of the directorate staff for their expertise, diligence and ongoing support to the Board.

Finally, I also express my appreciation to all Board members, as well as those who serve on or chair a committee of the Board. I respect and appreciate the commitment, integrity and experience each member contributes to our valuable work.

I look forward to continuing to work with the Western Australian education sector in the year ahead to serve the public interest by ensuring the professional, competent and safe practice of teaching.

On behalf of the Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia, I am pleased to present the Board’s 2020–21 annual report.

Signature of TRBWA's Chairperson, Margaret Collins.

Margaret Collins