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Teacher Shortages 2024

Dear Parents and Carers,

I’m writing to update and inform you of one of the greatest challenges we face in education today.

Undoubtedly most parents would be aware that there is a pressing shortage of teachers in Australian schools at present, and the evolving landscape suggests that this situation is poised to deteriorate further into the future.

I’ve taken the time to put together a summary of available statistics and information to illuminate the current climate we are dealing with.

Monash University has recently unveiled significant insights into the challenging environment within which teachers operate, shedding light on several key concerns linked to the current shortage:

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  • Lack of Respect: A staggering 7 in 10 teachers admit to not feeling respected by the Australian public. This pervasive sentiment can undoubtedly influence their performance and job satisfaction.
  • Safety Concerns: 1 in 4 teachers do not feel safe in their workplace, underscoring a serious issue that demands attention and resolution.
  • Unmanageable Workload: Less than 14% of teachers report that their workload is manageable. This alarming statistic points to a systemic issue affecting the well-being and effectiveness of educators.
  • Dwindling Satisfaction: The satisfaction levels among teachers have plummeted from 65.9% to 45.8% since 2019. Such a decline is concerning, especially considering the pivotal role teachers play in shaping the future of our children through education.
  • Desire for Influence: Teachers express a collective desire for a voice in policy-making, emphasizing the need for their perspectives to be considered in shaping the educational landscape.

For the reasons above, schools across Australia are desperately trying to fill thousands of teacher vacancies which currently exist. And the greatest concern is we simply don’t have enough teachers to fill the vacancies that exist.

In 2022 a teacher supply and demand report confirmed:

  • The forecast demand for teachers is expected to outpace supply by 2028 with a shortfall of 5036 teachers expected over this period.
  • The number of teacher vacancies grew 49% in primary schools and 68% for secondary schools between 2021-2022.
  • The number of applications per vacancy plummeted in primary school from 14.7 in 2021 to 5.3 in 2022 and 6.4 in 2021 to 2.8 in 2022 for secondary schools.
  • The teacher attrition rate grew by almost 20% between 2021 and 2022.
  • Nine out of ten school principals have reported facing extreme staffing challenges due to the current teacher shortages.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR ST ITAS?

At St Ita’s we have definitely felt the impact of the current teacher shortages, however we have been fortunate that we have maintained a strong base of Casual Relief Teachers (CRT’S) that enjoy working in the St Ita’s learning community.

Casual Relief Teachers (CRT’s) are qualified teachers who chose to work on selected days they chose to work based on their capacity and lifestyle. Unlike full or part time classroom teachers, CRT’s work for a daily rate, do not have outside of hours teacher responsibilities such as parent teacher interviews, planning, meetings etc. They also forgo holiday pay, sick leave and holiday loading.

One of the biggest challenges we face at St Ita’s is building and maintaining a strong bank of CRT’s that we use to support staff who are in leadership roles, staff who are on sick leave, staff who are on long service leave or staff completing mandated assessments across a specific grade level. An example of this is when the class teacher performs a one-to-one assessment task with a student in their level whilst a CRT takes and teaches the class based on the lessons the class teacher has planned.

An important side note is that the replacement of teachers and education support staff takes place before the school day actually begins, from 6.00 am, and can take anywhere up to an hour and a half to fill positions. If we cannot source teachers, we have no option but to split classes or close down a specialist class for the day. We acknowledge that this can be disruptive as well as increasing the workload of teachers who are onsite working, but this is the only way we can provide a duty of care to all students.

LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE AT ST ITAS

Below is an outline of our staff who have a leadership role in our school and as part of the new award, are entitled to time out of the classroom to work on their leadership responsibilities. The school improvement staff will also step into the role of Principal or Deputy Principal if Steve or I are out. (Please see the leadership / school improvement framework below)

ST ITA’S EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP TEAM

  • Andrew Osler Principal
  • Stephen Pitt Deputy Principal
  • Robyn Lewry Religious Education Leader / Grade 5-6 teacher

ST ITA’S SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT TEAM

  • Caitlin Noonan Learning Adjustment Leader / Curriculum Collective Leader F-2
  • Jacqui Greco Collective Leader Grade 3-4 / Numeracy Literacy Leader
  • Kristy Boettcher: Collective leader Grade 5-6
  • Hayden Davies: WSAPBS Whole school approach to positive behaviours support

I hope this goes some way to explain the current educational challenges we face. The upside to this is we will continue to navigate this challenging space and do our best to make sure all our students are given every opportunity to develop socially, emotionally, academically, physically and spiritually.

We thank you for your continued support and if you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact your child’s classroom teacher or myself for further clarity.

Kind regards,

 

Andrew Osler

Principal St Ita’s Primary

ANZAC Day Service

Dear Families,
On Thursday 25th April, we celebrate ANZAC day and we’ll come together, in person and in spirit, to commemorate the men and women who have served our nation in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations.

At the 10am service, a group of St Ita's students gather with their families and walk down to the Drouin Cenotaph from the Bendigo Bank. If you would like to be part of this memorial walk, please meet at the Bendigo Bank at 9.30am.

Please note that any students attending the ANZAC march must be accompanied by a parent as school staff are not responsible for students on this day.

Students are encouraged to wear their school uniform to be easily identified. Our school captains will lay a wreath at the 10am service on behalf of the school community.

Regards
Andrew Osler

2024 School Fees Concession Program Financial Hardship Program

2024 School Fees Concession Program Financial Hardship

Eligible Centrelink Concession Card (CCC) Holder

Information for Applicants

Aim: To assist school families experiencing financial hardship in accessing a Catholic Primary education for their child/children.

Confidentiality: At all times, the dignity and privacy of those seeking a fee concession will be respected.

Level of Concession: School office staff can advise applicants of the concessional fee to be charged. This concessional fee is fixed annually by Diocese of Sale Catholic Education Limited. Approved applicants will be charged only the concessional fee which will cover all standard school fees and levies including any charges remaining for camps, sports and excursions after the application of the Camps, Sports, Excursion Fund (CSEF) benefit.

Eligible Concession Cards: Centrelink issues a number of concession cards for a variety of reasons. Some cards have a generous or no income test and therefore holders of these cards are ineligible for a fee concession under Category One. Only CCC’s that are eligible for CSEF are eligible for the School Fees Concession Program. 

The following CCC’s are the most common cards that are eligible for CSEF. The CCC type is specified as a two or three letter code printed on the concession card.

  • YA or YAL – Youth Allowance
  • PPS – Parenting Payment Single
  • PPP – Parenting Payment Partnered
  • DSP – Disability Support Pension
  • NSA – New Start Allowance
  • LI – Low Income
  • FA – Family Tax Benefit
  • SA or SKA - Sickness Allowance
  • CAR - Carer Allowance
  • ABA or ABY - Schooling Applicant
  • AGE - Age Pension
  • AUS - Austudy
  • HCC - Health Care Card
  • PTA - Partnered Allowance
  • SPL - Special Benefit
  • WID or WFD or WFA – Widow Allowance/Pension

The CCC must be issued in the name of the fee payer and list the students for which the concession is to be applied.

The expiry date of the card must be on or after 1 January of the year (2024) for which the concession is to be applied.

If an eligible concession card expires after the start of the year, the concessional fee rate will still be applied for the entire year.

If a family becomes eligible during the course of a school year, then a pro-rata concession may be granted.

Lodgement of Application: Application for 2024 close on Friday 28th June 2024, please lodge your application immediately for your card to be checked and a pro-rata concession to be applied if applicable.

The following application forms must be completed and are available from the school office:

  • Complete the school’s application form & the Direct Debit Request (DDR) Service Agreement (or Centrepay application form)
  • Submit the completed forms and present a valid CCC for verifying and copying.
  • Complete and return the CSEF application form immediately after receiving it from the school.

Important Notes:

  • The concession is automatic for a parent/guardian responsible for the school fees, who holds an eligible CCC.
  • Any offer of a concession is subject to the applicant entering into a DDR Service Agreement or CentrePay arrangement for a regular payment plan of remaining fees (either weekly or fortnightly payments preferred). Any default in payment may result in the concession being withdrawn.
  • The Direct Debit form is available from the school office or alternatively the CentrePay application form is available online at https://www.humanservices.gov.au/customer/forms/sa325.
  • A CSEF application must be submitted for a concession to be granted.
  • A new application must be made for each school year.
  • Where the fee account is split, the concession applies to only that portion payable by the eligible card holder.
  • All families requesting, or receiving, a fee concession must notify the school should their financial circumstances change sufficiently to affect the level of concession offered or if cards are cancelled.

Please complete the below concession request forms and return to admin together with a copy of your valid concession card before Friday 28th June 2024.

2024_Concession_Application.pdf

IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR PARENTS

Good morning all, just letting the St Ita's community know that I will be on carers leave from Tuesday Feburary 27th -Tuesday March 5th.
In my absence for the week Mr Steve Pitt will take on the acting Principal role.
Steve can be contacted via his school email on spitt@stidrouin.catholic.edu.au or via school admin on 5623 7222.

Kind regards,
Andrew Osler
Principal