Vacancy not needed for local transfer option

Mel Smith
Country Organiser

There are a number of options available to teachers who want to change schools but not relocate their home including service transfers, applying for merit selection, the Teachers’ Professional Exchange Program and utilising the Local Transfer Scheme.

The Local Transfer Scheme does not rely on vacancies, but in effect arranges a permanent swap for two permanent teaches in the same staffing area. It provides opportunities for permanent classroom teachers and executive staff (other than principals) to gain new skills, experiences through permanent transfers to another position at the same level in a different school within their school staffing area.

Teachers are eligible to apply for the Local Transfer Scheme if they are permanent and have been at their current school, in their current position, for five years or more.

To apply for a transfer under the Local Transfer Scheme teachers must complete the Local Transfer Scheme application form and also update their transfer status through the Department of Education and Communities’ online transfer system. The teacher’s current principal is responsible for verifying information provided on the form which includes verification of position level, areas of responsibility, subjects/teaching area, service eligibility, and that the applicant is performing their duties satisfactorily.

Applications for the scheme are considered on the basis of subject/teaching area accreditation and, for executive staff (other than principals), their area of responsibility. In cases where the transfer opportunities would otherwise be equal for two applicants, length of service in the current school position will be the deciding factor between teachers’ applications.

Teachers should note that they will be appointed to, not offered, a position at any school on their preference list, so teachers should only list those schools at which they would like to teach.

The conditions under the Local Transfer Scheme are the same as those which apply to permanent transfers to a new school. Where teachers are appointed under the Local Transfer Scheme any other applications for priority or service transfer made by those teachers will no longer be current. Teachers will then need to meet the relevant eligibility requirements in their new position before being considered for further transfer.

Some teachers have been successful in obtaining a transfer via the Local Transfers Scheme in situations where they know a colleague in another school who also wanted a move, who matched codes, and submitted a Local Transfer Scheme application. While this has facilitated the transfer, not knowing of another person looking for a move in your staffing area does not preclude teachers from applying for the scheme.

Further information about the Local Transfer Scheme is available on the Department’s website at: Members can contact their local Federation Organiser to discuss options available to them.