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Leadership Development Program

Supported to make the switch to teaching

Monday, May 1st, 2023

Luke Doyle was always interested in teaching – and he says Teach For Australia’s employment-study pathway offered “the best of both worlds” when making the career switch.

A former statistician, Luke relocated from Melbourne to Dubbo to teach Mathematics at St John’s College as part of the 2023 Cohort of the Leadership Development Program – the first year TFA has placed Associates in NSW schools.

“The idea of going back to uni without full time employment would have been difficult and the TFA program offers the best of both worlds in that you can study and undertake paid work at the same time,” Luke said.

“I’d heard positive reviews and was really impressed with the calibre of teachers the program produced. I was also inspired by TFA’s mission to get highly trained and passionate people into the education industry as there is so much quality work that can be done.”

Luke said his first term in the program was “full on” but he felt well supported by his school, his TFA community and the program’s mentoring and coaching – which had quickly helped to grow his confidence.

“St Johns College Dubbo is an extremely supportive environment. There is a real sense as teachers that we are all in it together and we are willing to back each other up. The staff have such a lovely sense of humour and they’re truly passionate about what they do,” he said.

“The classroom mentoring is extremely valuable and allows me to identify the strengths I didn’t know I had and the teaching strategies that I didn’t know existed. I’m excited by the prospect that there is so much growth to be had and my effectiveness as a teacher is only bound by how much work I’m willing to put in.

“I feel very supported by the TFA community – the cohort in NSW is very tightly knit and we’re all in regular contact.”

Luke has also thrown himself into his new home of Dubbo, where he says he and his partner have been “welcomed with open arms”.

“We had no idea what to expect when we moved here. Dubbo has really surprised my partner and I,” he said.

“We’ve made lots of friends at the local park runs and we’re about to embark on Jesus Christ Superstar the musical with the local theatre group!”

St Johns College Principal, Nicole Morton, said Luke had been a wonderful addition to the school’s teaching team.

“He is really willing and interested in learning and improving. We’ve found Luke to be really flexible and open to ideas, and invested in our community – which is really powerful and says volumes about him,” she said.

“We’re really excited about TFA’s program and the layers of support that TFA has provided. We had been experiencing staff shortages and TFA’s program is an additional pathway for staffing and building teams. It brings people with other fields of expertise into your school community, which adds a different layer and perspective into your team. I can’t rate it highly enough.”

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