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Primary teacher going loopy!

Primary teacher going loopy!

Old Oct 12th 2007, 10:18 pm
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Lightbulb Primary teacher going loopy!

Hello

I've been in Australia for two months now and want to get a job - supply would be fine! I just want to work!

The impression I had coming over here was that teachers were badly needed. I applied for registration in QLD as soon as I got my police check and visa two months ago. I know, having spoken to an agent, that I have every document required submitted. To date, my application hasn't even been looked at and it will be another month before that happens Since applying, I've heard that actually there are TOO MANY teachers in Queensland and there aren't enough positions for them.

I'm going to Melbourne city for now but I have considered going to WA but is it all a myth about the shortage? Maybe not a myth but is it exagerated? Also, my husband is a rigger/scaffolder who is earning an excellent wage at the moment and doesn't want to take a pay cut.

I don't mind if I work in state, private or Catholic schools. Do you have to be registered to work in all of these types of school?

What should I do? I'm going mad

Last edited by apple3; Oct 12th 2007 at 10:20 pm. Reason: ommitted a thought
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Old Oct 13th 2007, 11:40 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Originally Posted by apple3 View Post
Hello

I've been in Australia for two months now and want to get a job - supply would be fine! I just want to work!

The impression I had coming over here was that teachers were badly needed. I applied for registration in QLD as soon as I got my police check and visa two months ago. I know, having spoken to an agent, that I have every document required submitted. To date, my application hasn't even been looked at and it will be another month before that happens Since applying, I've heard that actually there are TOO MANY teachers in Queensland and there aren't enough positions for them.

I'm going to Melbourne city for now but I have considered going to WA but is it all a myth about the shortage? Maybe not a myth but is it exagerated? Also, my husband is a rigger/scaffolder who is earning an excellent wage at the moment and doesn't want to take a pay cut.

I don't mind if I work in state, private or Catholic schools. Do you have to be registered to work in all of these types of school?

What should I do? I'm going mad
It took about 2 months for my teaching registration in QLD, some of it was my fault as I forgot to give them my transcripts, so had to wait for them from the UK. Surprisingly, I was offered 3 weeks work (I'm secondary teacher) and I was still waiting for a transcript from the UK, I rang the QLD college of teachers and told them I had a job and it was to start in about 5 days what could I do, they said get the "lost" transcript faxed from the Uni in the UK and we will see what we can do. Two days after the fax was sent, I was registered. So I think it is possible to hurry them up a bit if you have a possible job!

All the best x
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Old Oct 14th 2007, 5:37 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

In the area west of Brisbane where I live there are so few supply teachers that staff are unable to go on leave, some are using TAs to cover classes and at the local highschool I've heard that the lack of supply teachers has meant 2 or 3 classes being lumped together in the hall with 1 teacher to supervise!!!

I'm secondary and haven't even registered for supply (was taking a wee bit of time off) when I was tracked down by a school for a month-long full-time supply post in a Year 1 class. They had been looking for a supply teacher for over 2 months when somebody mentioned I was in the area.

Admittedly I am in a small town, however I am only 40mins from Ipswich and an hour and a half from the Gold Coast. There are a dozen or more primary schools nearby, as well as another larger town 30mins SE which has more primaries again. There are a number of independent schools in Ipswich and Catholic schools around here as well. Did you register with TRACER as well as Qld College of Teachers and Education Qld? TRACER co-ordinate the supply teaching for many areas in the SE.

I spend a bit of time on the TES boards as well (Aussie teacher planning to move to UK) and it seems the same thing is happening there as here - yes there are jobs, but they are not always where you want them. I graduated in Qld and part of the package of working for the state system here is taking up a remote/rural post for a few years before accruing points to relocate to the South East.

I also looked at moving to WA (I've just been in the NT for 6 months as I couldn't find a job in my subject area in SouthEast Qld) but it seems the situation over there is the same for jobs: they are in the remote places. We are talking Kalgoorlie, Kimberleys etc. A friend of mine lives in East Melbourne (has done for a couple of years). She is primary trained and for the past few years has just scraped by doing odd bod bits and pieces of supply. She says it is really tough and if they were able to move away from Melbourne, they would.

I don't think you MUST be registered to teach in private/independent schools but I've yet to come across a school/job in a private/independent school that did not require teacher rego so you should get it anyway. If you have rego with Qld College of Teachers you should be able to get reciprocal rego with Victoria.

It is hard to know what is true: we were told at uni (1998 - 2001) that when we graduated there would be jobs galore as the baby boomers retired to make way for us, but all this time later I'm teaching in my old schools and the same old teachers are STILL THERE! They've gone waaay past the 55 yr age gap and are still struggling on. Now we are hearing again that they will retire and there will be a massive shortage, but at the same time the Queensland Education Dept are trying to PAY primary teachers to move into other professions!!!

It may just be a bit of trial and error, as well as a lot of perserverance. The people I know locally who moved here and THEN tried to get teaching work all did so by pottering away at supply for 5 or more years and finally getting a permanent post. But the chat in the staffroom the other day was that the government were doing away with permanent posts, so who knows???

Good luck
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Old Oct 14th 2007, 10:52 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Apple3: Where abouts in Queensland are you? Australia is a big and varied place. I think to say "i thought there was a demand" is a bit dangerous - as this varies from town, area, region and state. Each state have their own system.

I'll tell you what I've found out whilst researching teaching in Townsville, QLD. My OH's parents live there, so thats where we want to be:

We've been researching teaching in Townsville, including a few visits to schools whilst we were there a few months back.

We're staying positive, and so far it's been suggested that we won't have a problem. At the end of one of my days in a secondary school I was offered a job! I think it probably would have been temporary contract though.

We're expecting that the only work we get for a while will be temp contract work, as there always seems to be staff off with long service leave or something. My understanding is also that you will have to complete a certain amount of time doing temp contract work before you can get a perm contract as you will need to aquire a "rating". Teachers in QLD are given ratings (1-4) at the end of teaching practice, where as we just get pass or fail in the UK. This rating then gets passed on to the department of education and is used when placing you.


I'm not sure about the getting registered with Queensland Collage of Teachers bit, as that's next on my list of things to research to see if we can register before we arrive...


But my advice for getting work:
If your not dong anything at the moment, contact schools, say your new to the area and would like to visit on a 'voluntary work experience basis'. This then gives you a chance to make an impression and makes the school aware of your existence.

Contact the regional office for the Department of Education in your area and ask to speak to the person in charge of staffing. I did this when we were in Townsville and the lady I spoke to was really helpful.

Queensland States schools work on a 'pool' system. so you apply to the department, schools inform the department that they need someone, and then the department place you. If a school know of someone they want, they can request them though, so thats why it's worth getting into schools ASAP.

Also be aware, certain areas of QLD are considered remote/rural/hard to staff. Others, such as Brisbane is considered popular. It may be that your asked to work in a rural school for upto 2-3 years before being considered for work in a more popular area.

This won't seem to affect us as Townsville is considered as somewhat remote anyway.


So, Where abouts are you based now? I presume that's where your fella currently has secured work?
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Old Oct 16th 2007, 9:58 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Hello all, I am new to this forum...

I don't know whether to feel relieved or even more frustrated by this thread. I am also a primary teacher looking for work. I applied to the queensland college of teachers whilst still in the UK and was told it would take 6-8 weeks. It actually took 3 months as i only got my certificate thru last week, (i applied in June).

I have all the forms for the TAC but don't want to be entered into a pool. I also have the forms for TRACER as would be happy to do supply, but apparently you HAVE to apply to the TAC before you can apply to TRACER. And to add to that you have to get all your docs certified again.

Is it possible to get supply work without going via TRACER? If so what is the best approach?

I know in England it's not the done thing to just phone around schools, is it ok to do that here? I live in morningside, Brisbane which is pretty close to the city. I've been looking on the courier mail site for jobs. what else can i do??

Thanks for your help in advance,

Last edited by kel76; Oct 16th 2007 at 10:11 am.
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Old Oct 16th 2007, 4:01 pm
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Hi Kel76,

Three months erh? I wasn't sure if we'd be able to register from the UK. What did you need in order to register? I might start that sooner than later...

Sorry, what is TAC?

Regarding contacting the school, I simply googled a few schools, found the email addresses of specific individuals, and emailled them asking for "work experience". One school were fine with me doing this. The other simply asked for a letter from my current school, and then were fine. But a copy of a professional reference my do the job. I'm sure no school/department will turn down a spare pair of hands... (?)
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Old Oct 17th 2007, 10:22 pm
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Hey Simon & Kate,

I applied whilst back in the UK just by going on the QCT website and dowloading the forms - there are a lot! You need copies of all your qualifications and written refs and you need to get these certified by a JP or solicitor. Look around as some courts can charge almost 10 pounds per doc - think i had about 14 docs in total.

The TAC is the Teacher Applicant Centre - apparently you need to be registered with them before you can apply to state schools - i think its some kind of pool system which seems v bizarre. Also the supply agency TRACER requires you to be registered with the TAC.

Think i'm gonna give one of the local schools a ring just to see what the deal is. I'll keep you posted!!

Last edited by kel76; Oct 17th 2007 at 10:24 pm.
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Old Oct 18th 2007, 1:47 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

You might have more luck in out of the way places than major cities. Getting a teaching job in ACT is pot luck and I know of some very talented teachers who have been strung along on contract after contract for ages. There does seem to be a preference for new graduates because they cost less - I have also heard that that is true down in Victoria as well. If you have some sort of specialization you may be more marketable - reading recovery, autism, behaviour problems or other special ed are usually in reasonable demand.
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Old Oct 18th 2007, 9:40 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Originally Posted by kel76 View Post
Hey Simon & Kate,

I applied whilst back in the UK just by going on the QCT website and dowloading the forms - there are a lot! You need copies of all your qualifications and written refs and you need to get these certified by a JP or solicitor. Look around as some courts can charge almost 10 pounds per doc - think i had about 14 docs in total.

The TAC is the Teacher Applicant Centre - apparently you need to be registered with them before you can apply to state schools - i think its some kind of pool system which seems v bizarre. Also the supply agency TRACER requires you to be registered with the TAC.

Think i'm gonna give one of the local schools a ring just to see what the deal is. I'll keep you posted!!
My experience so far, living in Brisbane. Registered with teaching agencies Protocol Education and Smart Teachers (both are in the UK as well). Managed to get some work from Smart Teachers in a private school, only 3 weeks work, but a start....... But, you do need your QLD registration from the teachers college. I have done 2 weeks so far and Protocol are already asking me when I'm available next. I am also looking into the TAC route as well, but all that paper work again! It's beyond me.
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Old Oct 18th 2007, 11:51 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Originally Posted by confusedpom View Post
My experience so far, living in Brisbane. Registered with teaching agencies Protocol Education and Smart Teachers (both are in the UK as well). Managed to get some work from Smart Teachers in a private school, only 3 weeks work, but a start....... But, you do need your QLD registration from the teachers college. I have done 2 weeks so far and Protocol are already asking me when I'm available next. I am also looking into the TAC route as well, but all that paper work again! It's beyond me.
Hey,

Yeah i've registered with Smart teachers but not protocol (will give them a try). No jobs thru smart as yet tho. I have my QCT registration and card finally! Was told that TRACER are a big supply agency but you do need to be registered with the TAC to register with TRACER. I've also looked on the courier mail website but so far nothing near me. As much as people are advising me to look at remote places i do not have that option as my boyfriend and i moved out here because of his work, he is based in Brisbane.

What i don't understand is why you seem to have to apply to TAC to get a job in a state school. I can't remember now if the jobs advertised in the courier were only private or catholic. So frustrating - all i want to do is teach! Why does it have to be so complicated??
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Old Oct 20th 2007, 9:38 pm
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

Thanks for the good advice Kate. It's amazing, I'm so clueless as to how exactly to go about getting to teach here - which agencies to contact and the like. People have been mentioning TRACER and TAC and I'm again! I'm lost! I've actually decided to go to Melbourne now. Hopefully, when I'm on the ground there, I can do like you say, contacting local schools. Hubby doesn't have one location with work. So far, we've been in Central Queensland for 3 weeks, now we're in East Victoria for 2 weeks. He'll be going back up to Queensland for a week, then back to Melbourne for 2 weeks! He might only get a weeks notice for a job. So, you see it was very difficult to choose a location to settle.

To update, I've now applied for WA registration. They say I can be registered in less than 4 weeks. Then I can apply for mutual recognition in Victoria. I'm applying for admin type jobs while I get all of this sorted. We're giving up on Queensland. Kel, I understand your frustration!

Originally Posted by Simon.and.Kate View Post
Apple3: Where abouts in Queensland are you? Australia is a big and varied place. I think to say "i thought there was a demand" is a bit dangerous - as this varies from town, area, region and state. Each state have their own system.

I'll tell you what I've found out whilst researching teaching in Townsville, QLD. My OH's parents live there, so thats where we want to be:

We've been researching teaching in Townsville, including a few visits to schools whilst we were there a few months back.

We're staying positive, and so far it's been suggested that we won't have a problem. At the end of one of my days in a secondary school I was offered a job! I think it probably would have been temporary contract though.

We're expecting that the only work we get for a while will be temp contract work, as there always seems to be staff off with long service leave or something. My understanding is also that you will have to complete a certain amount of time doing temp contract work before you can get a perm contract as you will need to aquire a "rating". Teachers in QLD are given ratings (1-4) at the end of teaching practice, where as we just get pass or fail in the UK. This rating then gets passed on to the department of education and is used when placing you.


I'm not sure about the getting registered with Queensland Collage of Teachers bit, as that's next on my list of things to research to see if we can register before we arrive...


But my advice for getting work:
If your not dong anything at the moment, contact schools, say your new to the area and would like to visit on a 'voluntary work experience basis'. This then gives you a chance to make an impression and makes the school aware of your existence.

Contact the regional office for the Department of Education in your area and ask to speak to the person in charge of staffing. I did this when we were in Townsville and the lady I spoke to was really helpful.

Queensland States schools work on a 'pool' system. so you apply to the department, schools inform the department that they need someone, and then the department place you. If a school know of someone they want, they can request them though, so thats why it's worth getting into schools ASAP.

Also be aware, certain areas of QLD are considered remote/rural/hard to staff. Others, such as Brisbane is considered popular. It may be that your asked to work in a rural school for upto 2-3 years before being considered for work in a more popular area.

This won't seem to affect us as Townsville is considered as somewhat remote anyway.


So, Where abouts are you based now? I presume that's where your fella currently has secured work?
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Old Oct 22nd 2007, 10:29 am
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Default Re: Primary teacher going loopy!

The jobs in the Courier Mail are 99% for private/independent and Catholic schools. Welcome to the world of teaching in Queensland - after the system of finding a job in TES, applying and getting it on merit that operates in England you will probably be somewhat frustrated by the approach taken here. I guess part of the reason is that Queensland is such a large area, the department wants to ensure a fair distribution of teachers and not have everyone crammed into the south east.

The TAC is a sort of sieve for the Queensland Education Department.

First, you register with QCT.

Then you apply to the TAC (which is essentially a branch of the Education Department). Only do this if you are planning to work in state schools in ANY capacity - supply, long term, permanent (if you're lucky!!). Paperwork won't kill you - if you're desperate for work it is best to cover all bases.

TRACER are not really a supply agency as such (certainly not in the style of Protocol or Smart Teachers) - they only operate supply teaching for state schools and not ALL state schools will use TRACER. Even once you are registered with TRACER it is still advisable to contact individual schools (letter, phone, visit) to advise them of your availability and let them put a face to a name. Many schools in my area have preferred teachers they phone directly for supply OR they will specifically ask TRACER to send Teacher A or B.

Private, Catholic schools etc apply as per England method. You will more than likely still need your QCT rego but will not need Edu Qld rego (TAC).

TAC is complicated and I will not begin to unravel the mysteries here, but there are about 4 types of applicant: most of you from the UK (with experience) will enter as a G4 applicant. You have to submit paperwork as well as Statements of Service (from previous teaching service; ENSURE you get these right or they will send them back - in my case TWO years after I submitted it :curse:. This is to determine your place on the payscale). There is a complicated system or ratings (S1 = good and so on) and this is where you are pooled - higher rating means you are at top of pool and all teachers are expected to do 'country service' and accrue points to transfer to more desirable location.

You do not have to bother with the rating system if you only plan to do Casual relief within the state system (or very short term temporary). If you are a G4 applicant you will probably have to attend an interview with a panel who will assess whether you are an S1, S2 etc. If you register then get some short term temp work, you can organise to have the principal at that school assess you (much more realistic, I think).

Phone them if possible as it is easier to have someone explain than try to glean info from website. Personally I find the Ed Qld website a pain in the proverbial and even after years still can't find what I'm looking for when I need it. They keep sending me letters demanding I attend interviews to be rated but I have been digging my heels in because I don't want them giving me one of their silly labels - and I've still managed to get enough supply in my area, as well as short term (a month) temp here and there.

Also: for the person going to WA - it is not always smooth sailing in that direction either so be prepared!!

Good luck everybody and I hope the Queensland system is kinder to you than the English system has been to me!!! (Yep, I'm one of the "lucky" Aussies who taught for a day or so in London before realising I preferred Scotland. QTS was never mentioned in the couple schools I was in and I never went back to England. Last year made the decision to return to the UK for good and signed up with about 30 teaching agencies, only to be told I could never teach in England again as 4 years had elapsed since my couple days teaching there and I hadn't got QTS. I had never even HEARD of QTS til that moment so you can imagine the tears, horror and frustration at my house).
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