Prac teacher negotiations

Kate Ambrose
Membership and Training Officer

Federation is seeking an increase in the daily practice supervision payment and new forms of recognition for teachers supervising practicum students.

Currently teachers are paid $21.20 per day to supervise student teachers — the same rate that was paid in 1991. The union is seeking a new daily rate of more than $30, indexed each year by CPI.

Over the past few years, Federation has had discussions with the NSW Council of Deans of Education to look at ways of appropriately recognising the crucial role experienced teachers play in mentoring student teachers undertaking professional experience in public schools.

Federation is communicating with university vice chancellors to establish a memorandum of understanding that will outline the recognition, both financial and professional, for teachers mentoring student teachers on professional experience.

In addition to increasing the daily practice supervision payment Federation is seeking that supervision should count towards hours of professional development towards maintenance of accreditation or higher levels with the Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards. Universities should also allow the hours of supervision of student teachers to count towards higher degrees such as graduate diplomas and master degrees. This would benefit both beginning teachers and experienced teachers alike.

Federation also seeks a clear delineation between practicum and internships as described in Great Teaching, Inspired Learning, with appropriate remuneration.

The union understands how important the practical component is in a teaching degree.

If the universities lift the recognition and reward for this important role of student teacher supervision, more experienced teachers are likely to undertake the mentoring of student teachers.

Public schools and their teachers do the heavy lifting in the number of student teacher placements they take each year — more than 80 per cent of placements are in public schools.

Federation is committed to ensuring that graduates from training institutions are ready to provide high quality teaching and learning to the public education system in NSW.