Paying high achievers to teach ignores real problem

Leading educators say giving high achievers money to enter teaching doesn't address issues at the heart of the teaching crisis.

Dr Jessica Holloway from ACU’s Institute for Learning Science and Teacher Education told Education Today the proposal for raising teacher quality is short-sighted and fundamentally misunderstands the problem schools face.

"There are two major issues with their plan to attract high-achieving students into teaching through cash rewards,” she said.

“First, the teacher shortage crisis is a matter of retention. We need a plan to keep current teachers in the profession. Research shows they are leaving because of unbearable workloads, unrealistic expectations, and the loss of professional autonomy.

"Second, ATAR scores tell us almost nothing about the kind of teacher someone will become.

"Teacher education is designed to prepare prospective teachers, and resources should be directed at helping them thrive. Rather than placing additional burdens on teachers’ plates, or assuming that high-ATAR students will be the solution, we should do everything possible to provide current teachers with the resources and professional autonomy required to do their jobs well.

“This will not only encourage current teachers to remain in the classroom today but will also help to attract the teachers of tomorrow."

Read the full story here.


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