We are dedicated to working in areas of need and partner exclusively with schools serving low socioeconomic communities, striving to build sustained partnerships. We are helping to break the cycle of educational disadvantage through two key levers that research shows impact student outcomes most: teacher quality and leadership.
Our programs teach leadership as a set of skills and behaviours that enable someone to mobilise others to bring about change. An effective teacher will exemplify leadership every day working with their students, inspiring them to achieve their full potential.
02 How we select our teachers
Through a highly rigorous selection process, we ensure that each incoming Associate has the qualities to succeed as a teacher. We look for well-rounded and passionate individuals who have the qualities to create change, inside the classroom and beyond.
We assess candidates against the following eight competencies, which are based on evidence of effectiveness in the classroom:
- Leadership and achievement
- Commitment to mission
- Communication and influencing ability
- Problem solving
- Organisational and planning ability
- Humility, respect and empathy
- Learning and self-evaluation
The comprehensive online application is an opportunity for candidates to demonstrate their past experience and why they want to participate in the program.
After extensive review of the application, successful candidates are then invited to a phone interview, allowing us to better understand their experiences and motivations.
Candidates who are successful in their interview are invited to a day of assessment activities including a group activity and a sample teaching lesson. Partner School principals are welcome to observe the Selection Day process.
Successful Selection Day candidates are extended a conditional offer to participate in the program. Following acceptance of an offer, a position as an Associate is contingent upon:
- Confirmation of placement at one of our partner schools
- Completion of the relevant school and jurisdiction employment processes
- Successfully gaining registration with the relevant teacher registration body
While Associates come from a range of academic disciplines, each has:
- A Bachelor’s Degree and proven subject area expertise in the area in which they teach
- The potential to be an exceptional and inspirational leader
- The passion and capacity to help address educational inequity
03 Placement process
In partnership with the federal government and program partners in each participating state and territory, we have established criteria for school eligibility. We encourage prospective partner schools to discuss eligibility with their respective Teach For Australia State or Territory Manager. Teach For Australia, together with our partner schools, aims to ensure that the support provided to each Associate is consistent and relevant, regardless of geographic location.
As a key support mechanism, we endeavour where possible to place Associates in clusters within the same school and/or in schools that are nearby one another. In the event that a match is not possible, partner schools are informed as soon as possible, ensuring that they have time to pursue other avenues to fill vacancies.
Generally, Associates are employed at 1.0FTE (although this does vary between states / territories) to teach a 0.8 FTE teaching load, with one day per week (or the equivalent) allocated for ongoing training and development.
04 Training and development
The Leadership Development Program offers a combined postgraduate education and employment opportunity, allowing Associates to put their education into practice immediately.
Teach For Australia partners with ACU to deliver a Master of Teaching (Secondary) (Leading Learning) to Associates. This new partnership marks a bold innovation in teacher preparation in Australia, where for the first time, Associates are able to fully integrate three components – their classroom teaching, Teach For Australia leadership development activities, and Master of Teaching studies – such that their efforts across all three domains are recognised, and contribute towards their qualification.
The first component of the Leadership Development Program is the Initial Intensive, which commences in the November before Associates’ first year of teaching. Associates complete a portion of their Master of Teaching (Secondary) (Leading Learning) during Initial Intensive, undertaking learning modules and school practicums that introduce them to all aspects of teaching and learning to prepare them for entry into the classroom.
Associates continue to develop their teaching and leadership skills throughout the two year program, as part of the Teach For Australia community.
Over the two years, Associates undertake a number of additional intensive programs (the structure of which varies from region to region), as well asregional professional development sessions throughout the year. These regional sessions contribute to assessment requirements and further build Associates’ understanding of the needs of students, schools and communities – as well as the broader issues affecting educational equity in Australia.
Associates are guided by a comprehensive support network of experienced teachers, professionals and leadership coaches with whom they develop close working relationships.
Teaching and Leadership Adviser
Teach For Australia provides each Associate with a dedicated, experienced teacher who provides rigorous one-on-one coaching, regular classroom observations and pastoral care to guide Associates’ development as a teacher and leader throughout the program.
ACU Academic Mentor
ACU provides Associates with direct support through a university academic who supports, supervises and assesses Associates’ academic progress throughout their degree and guides them towards the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers.
We ask each Partner School to identify and match our Associates with an experienced teacher within the school. Teach For Australia provides comprehensive mentor development, enabling mentors to further develop skills and share learnings across the school.
Learn more about our Mentor Development Program here.
Teach For Australia Network
Associates are part of a national network of inspired, connected and empowered leaders who work as a collective to help break the cycle of disadvantage.
Throughout the program, these peer relationships create a collegial network, sharing best practice, offering emotional support and reinforcing their passion and commitment.
Associates can connect with leaders around the world as part of the Teach For All network, with staff and Alumni available to discuss topics such as international education and classroom best practice, school leadership, school innovation and policy.
05 Beyond the two-year program
On completion of the two-year program, Associates meet the Proficient Standards under the Australian Professional Standards. Eligibility for full registration allows Associates to continue teaching beyond the program.
The two-year minimum teaching commitment is foundational and forms the bedrock of a transformational experience that helps to further develop Associates into great teachers with the leadership mindsets and skills that ultimately push for a more just society.
We know that teachers matter to their students, and acknowledge the importance of great teachers continuing their work in schools. To that end, Teach For Australia works with schools to support and encourage Associates to consider remaining in the classroom at the conclusion of the Leadership Development Program.
We also believe that additional efforts are required to achieve the equity we seek. As such, we wholly support Alumni should they choose to pursue other endeavours such as influencing education policy or innovating and solving problems in schools and the education system.
06 School commitment
Partner schools sign a Partnership Agreement with Teach For Australia. This agreement outlines the roles and responsibilities of each party that contribute to the development of Associates and allow for maximum Associate impact.
To support Associate development, our partner schools commit to:
- Providing each Associate with a supportive environment
- Providing each Associate with a School Mentor, and providing each School Mentor with sufficient time release to observe and meet with their Associate and to engage in professional learning through our Mentor Development Program.
- Providing each Associate you employ with a salary equivalent to other beginning teachers. (Specific salary ranges vary across regions: Associates are employed at 1.0FTE in most regions, however are given a 0.8FTE teaching load and 0.2FTE time release to study and meet with their Teaching and Leadership Adviser, School Mentor and ACU Academic Mentor.)
- Ensuring Associates only teach within their eligible subject areas (as determined by the relevant registration body / Teacher Registration Board in the schools state / territory) and have a teaching load of no more than 0.8FTE.
- Providing each Associate with a time release of 0.2 FTE to study and meet with their Teaching and Leadership Adviser, School Mentor and ACU Academic Mentor.
- Allowing Associates to each in method areas in which they are enrolled as part of their Master of Teaching (Secondary) (Leading Learning).
07 Mentor Development Program
Teach For Australia is committed to our vision of an Australia where education gives every child, regardless of background, greater choice for their future. We believe that high quality mentoring of early career teachers is a key component in achieving this vision.
As part of hiring a teacher through our Leadership Development Program, we provide comprehensive mentor training for an experienced teacher at your school. Partner schools must commit to providing a School Mentor to their Associate(s) who provides on-the-ground contextual support, complementing Associates’ Teaching and Leadership Adviser and Academic Mentor.
The School Mentor is an important part of ensuring the development and effectiveness of Associates. Selected by school principals, School Mentors observe Associate teaching, provide reflective feedback and collaborate with the Associate’s broader support network.
School mentors benefit from a comprehensive two-year training program provided by Teach For Australia. This program is a significant professional learning opportunity for existing teachers within your school, comprising approximately fourteen hours of content that is aligned with the Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher Standards.
08 Network Connect
Teach For Australia contributes to a broader network of organisations that deeply value educational outcomes and equity. We are not alone in seeking an Australia where all children, regardless of background, receive an excellent education.
We facilitate a connection for our Partner Schools with initiatives developed by our Alumni and other organisations who share our vision. We encourage Partner Schools to contact organisations directly if you are interested in discussing possible partnerships.
Blue Sky Connect
In the Northern Territory, only 50% of students graduate from high school. Students in regional and remote schools face additional hurdles to gaining exposure to professional networks and career options.
Blue Sky Connect is a not for profit organisation founded by TFA Alumni Hannah Morris (Cohort 2016) and Jonathan Chow (Cohort 2015) that assists young people in secondary schools across the Northern Territory in accessing competitive work experience opportunities at leading professional organisations.
Through our connections in schools across the Territory and our professional networks, we work with careers advisers, teachers and workplaces to help match up students with a workplace that suits their specific interests and aspirations.
Maths Pathway is a holistic Learning and Teaching Model that leverages technology to enable teachers to target each student’s point of need, and allows them to focus on practices that have the greatest impact on student learning.
The model is currently available for Year 5 – Year 10 mathematics students, and has proven success in a broad range of school contexts.
Maths Pathway was founded by Teach For Australia Alumni, who designed the model to help teachers increase their impact in the classroom, and use real-time student learning data to inform their day-to-day practice.
Australian Schools Plus
Australian Schools Plus is a national charity that makes it simple, effective and tax-deductible for donors who value education to give to disadvantaged schools. More than 4,600 schools across Australia (Government, Catholic and Independent) are eligible* for support through Schools Plus.
By matching donors with schools, we support initiatives that have the greatest impact in students’ lives. This includes projects that focus on student wellbeing, effective teaching, student and family engagement and STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) education.
*Eligible schools have a value below 1000 on the Index of Community Socio-Educational Advantage (ICSEA) as listed on the My School website.
Brotherhood St Laurence (Saver Plus)
Saver Plus is delivered in 60 communities across Australia. It is a matched savings and financial education initiative, designed to assist individuals and families on lower incomes to improve their levels of financial education, develop a savings habit and build assets for educational purposes.
Teach Learn Grow
Teach Learn Grow is committed to obtaining an Australia where every child has equal opportunities in education, regardless of their location, background or circumstance.
We provide free one-on-one tutoring and mentoring to rural and remote Australian students, with the aim of empowering students to realise their full potential.
With the support of our partners and volunteers we want to ignite a movement to influence change within education. Currently, Teach Learn Grow runs programs in 31 schools across WA and NSW.