New to teaching? Welcome aboard!
Queensland Teachers' Journal, Vol 128 No 1, 17 February 2023, page no. 23
If you have started your teaching journey in 2023, welcome from the QTU! Congratulations on making it through the first few weeks, which can be a wee bit tumultuous. It is important to seek support and assistance to help you as you become familiar with the system.
Here is some information and a few tips to help you get started.
If you have graduated from university, you have been granted provisional teacher registration by the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT). After one year of full-time teaching (200 days) you will be able to transition to full registration if you demonstrate that you meet the graduate level of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST). The provisional registration period can be extended if needed. Go to www.qct.edu.au to learn more.
All new permanent employees of the Department of Education (DoE) must undergo probation, which is usually an eight-month process. Expectations, support, and timelines for meetings should be agreed. You must be provided with a performance review by your principal after three months, which must be recorded on the applicable form. Any areas of concern must be identified, and an agreed action plan developed. There must be genuine support put in place to address the issues identified at the three-month mark. A formal appraisal will be conducted by the end of six months of service (usually July), resulting in a recommendation of either confirmation or termination of appointment. Contact your school’s Union Rep or the Queensland Teachers’ Assist Desk (QTAD) on 1300 117 823 if you have any questions.
All new employees must undergo an induction program, which should provide you with basic “who’s who” information, human resources protocols, workplace health and safety (WH&S) procedures, how to traverse the system and where to seek support when needed.
Permission to Teach (PTT) employment processes
PTT is a short-term, interim form of approval from the QCT that allows teaching prior to completion of qualifications if a registered teacher is not available to fill a vacancy. A PTT employee will be classified within Band 1, Step 1 of the teacher salary scale, and will have the same working conditions as all beginning teachers. They should receive additional guidance and support as they are not fully qualified and are juggling work and study commitments.
Anyone employed under PTT provisions should submit their academic transcripts to the QCT upon completion of their qualifications, and it is particularly important to provide this information to DoE, as it will not automatically transition a teacher to the higher salary scale (Band 2 Step 1) upon graduation. Go to https://cdn.qct.edu.au/pdf/Principles_for_Permission_to_Teach.pdf and https://www.qct.edu.au/registration/other-approval-permission-to-teach to learn more.
Turn to Teaching (TTT)
Having undertaken the first year of a Master of Teaching degree at university, TTT interns have a .5 teaching load, but with a full-time salary, and will have access to the same entitlements as a full-time teacher, with support from a supervising teacher and a mentor teacher (see the mentoring section below). They are employed under a Permission to Teach (PTT) registration arrangement. The interns must be fully supervised during the first term, and ongoing supervision and mentoring must be provided throughout the internship year. They must meet the “gradual release indicators” (GRI), which are outlined in their internship agreement and are assessed at the end of each term to determine progress.
Mandatory training and beginning teacher induction
You will have participated in the mandatory all-staff training (MAST) online modules, as well as modules that form part of a beginning teacher induction program. While not mandatory, the Beginning Teacher Learning Suite (an online resource consisting of ten modules) is highly recommended.
Beginning teacher mentoring
The certified agreement (CA) requires structured mentoring support for beginning teachers. At the end of 2020, DoE suspended the funding of school-based mentoring beginning teacher (MBT) programs, and instead introduced online and regional mentoring. The QTU continues to seek full dedicated funding to schools for MBT programs. Mentoring should be undertaken in rostered duty time and resources should be allocated. Support of TTT interns attracts four days of release time for the supervising teacher and some release for their mentor teacher.
Stay connected with your Union
Contact QTAD for quick access to basic information and advice on your working conditions or, in more complex cases, to be referred to a specialist QTU Officer. Ph. 1300 11 7823 (1300 11 QTAD) or visit www.qtu.asn.au/qtad
The QTU employs 12 Organisers across the state who work with members across different regions. The contact details of your Organiser or local QTU office can be found at www.qtu.asn.au/contact.