Teach For Australia (TFA) welcomes the release today of the final report of the independent review into Quality Initial Teacher Education (QITE), commissioned by the Australian Government.
We appreciated the opportunity to participate in the Review’s public consultation phase, and are grateful to see TFA’s expertise in ITE acknowledged. We are also pleased to see TFA’s potential for greater and ongoing impact reflected in the Review’s recommendations:
Recommendation 6: Accelerate high‑quality candidates into teaching
Accelerate entry of high-quality candidates into teaching by:
- establishing an innovation in initial teacher education fund that supports innovative employment‑based pathways
- expanding existing Australian Government alternative pathways and securing long-term funding for Teach For Australia
- expanding state and territory alternative pathway programs.
TFA’s submission to the QITE Review was informed by 14 years’ experience attracting and supporting talented people into teaching, who had not previously considered the profession. We have worked exclusively with schools in low-income, regional, rural and remote communities with significant teaching workforce needs.
TFA is Australia’s largest and first employment-based pathway into teaching. With bipartisan support from Commonwealth, State and Territory governments since 2009, TFA has placed 1281 teachers into schools in Victoria, Tasmania, Northern Territory, Western Australia and South Australia.
Through our rigorous selection process, TFA recruits people into teaching who are committed to increasing opportunities for all students. After 12 Cohorts, 88 per cent of TFA program participants are actively working towards more equitable education outcomes by teaching and leading in schools or working in the education system.
We have designed, delivered and continuously refined our proven model for bringing exceptional graduates and career changers into the teaching profession, where their experience, subject knowledge and leadership skills combine to benefit students and schools.
Our partner principals overwhelmingly value the contributions of TFA teachers in both the classroom and staffroom.
TFA’s model recognises how vital it is for beginning teachers to receive ongoing support through their early years, including coaching and mentoring that builds foundational skills and helps them progress into quality teachers. Teach For Australia’s work with in-school mentors extends the impact of the program to colleagues in placement schools.
TFA’s teaching pathway has twice been verified as cost-effective.
Most recently, in 2021, PwC compared the cost to the Commonwealth of producing a qualified teacher across different ITE pathways. PwC found that on current data, TFA is a more cost-effective way for the Commonwealth to produce a ‘teacher who teaches’ than the average traditional Bachelor or Masters ITE pathway. Alongside the initial cost to the Commonwealth of each ITE pathway, this analysis factored in other costs arising from course completion and employment rates post-qualification.
PwC’s analysis reinforced the 2021 NSW Productivity Commission’s endorsement of TFA’s Leadership Development Program as a cost-effective pathway that is bringing, and retaining, quality teachers to the profession.
Addressing educational inequity in Australia is complex and collective work. TFA is dedicated to working with governments, education stakeholders, schools and communities across the nation to lift the status and quality of teaching.
We do this in service of our vision where education gives every child regardless of background greater choice for their future.
Melodie Potts Rosevear
Founder and CEO, Teach For Australia