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4 ways you’ll have a career with impact in the classroom with Teach For Australia

Teach For Australia

Ready to make a real impact? Teach For Australia’s employment-based pathway into teaching will change your life, and so many more.

More and more graduates are choosing Australia’s original and leading employment-based pathway into teaching – and it’s no wonder.

The Leadership Development Program is a two-year study-employment pathway where participants are supported to complete their Masters of Teaching while working in schools. Known as ‘Associates’, TFA teachers are matched in secondary schools where workforce needs are greatest, and they teach subjects directly related to their previous careers and studies.

Teach For Australia Associates are placed in partner schools across Victoria, Western Australia, Tasmania, the Northern Territory and South Australia.

The schools and students benefit from the recruitment of additional teachers with exceptional skills and expertise in their field, while the Associates have a supported opportunity to complete their Master’s qualification.

But there’s a lot more to this pathway than simply teaching while studying. Here are four key facts you might not know about this employment-based pathway into teaching:

  1. You're ready to make an impact on day one in the classroom

Teach For Australia’s Leadership Development Program kicks off in November each year with a study and training intensive.

There’s a second intensive the following January, after which you’ll have completed one-quarter of a Masters of Teacher (Secondary) (Leading Learning), including teaching practicums, and connected with a motivating network of Teach For Australia peers.

The intensives give you the foundation you need to be ready for your first day – and beyond – teaching in the classroom of your placement school.

Liam O’Connor is one of TFA’s newest Associates and began teaching at Hawkesdale Secondary School in southwest Victoria this year as part of Cohort 2022. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science majoring in wildlife and conservation biology, Liam said the Leadership Development Program’s work-and-study pathway into the classroom was a major drawcard.

“Teaching was something that I had always wanted to do but the thought of having to study full-time for another two years was very unappealing,” Liam said. “After my degree, I knew I wanted to start doing something to make a change for our planet. Reflecting on what I could do, I realised changing future generations’ perspectives on the environment would be the greatest impact I could have. TFA put me in the class and a position to help enable that change in the space of months.”

2. You have your own network of support

Teaching is a demanding job – and add to that finishing your Master’s at the same time – but in the Leadership Development Program you’ll be supported by coaches, mentors and the amazing Teach For Australia peer network across the two-year program.

Your coaches and mentors will be experienced teachers who provide tailored, one-on-one guidance that will aid your professional development. You will also have an academic mentor supporting you with your Master’s studies.

The wider Teach For Australia community is also here for you. This includes the peer Associates in your Cohort, and also 1000+ TFA program Alumni – now experienced teachers who have all been in the exact position you are in, and who are similarly motivated to improve educational outcomes for students and young people.

“The Leadership Development Program is unlike any other uni experience, you get to teach the things you’re passionate about and you’re surrounded by intelligent compassionate people who all want to help each other succeed,” Liam said.

Since 2010, more than 1200 teachers have come to the classroom via Teach for Australia, teaching more than 440,000 students – and 88 per cent continue to teach and lead in schools or work with other education-focused organisations.

3. You earn while you learn

In TFA’s Leadership Development Program, you’ll earn a full salary while gaining your Master’s of Teaching.

Associates’ salaries are easily comparable to other graduate teachers and increase with experience and progression.

You’re employed and paid by the relevant government department of education or school, so salaries and other employment conditions will vary depending on the state or territory of your placement.

The majority of program costs are covered by Teach For Australia, in partnership with the Australian Government, on an assisted scholarship. Associates contribute a portion towards the Master’s degree with access to FEE-HELP for these payments if eligible.

4. It will be life-changing

It’s a harsh reality that not every child in Australia can access the education they deserve.

Children from the lowest-income households are on average three years behind in school by the time they’re 15. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students are on average six times more likely to be below the national minimum standards for literacy and numeracy. Students from rural or remote communities are less than half as likely to go to university - and are more likely to drop out if they do.

While the problems are complex, we do know that quality teaching and school leadership are two significant drivers for boosting student outcomes.

Put simply, great teaching can be life-changing.

Teach For Australia’s vision is for an Australia where education gives every child, regardless of background, greater choice for their future. When coming to the classroom with TFA, you become part of a community of leaders and change-makers committed to working for educational equity.

During the two-year program, you’ll develop and hone new teaching and leadership skills on a professional, academic and personal level.

And you’ll do this for the students, who are at the heart of Teach For Australia’s vision and mission.

“The biggest change for me has been moving out and away from all my connections,” Liam said, “But Hawkesdale is such an awesome little school. The staff and students are the absolute best. The sense of community and collaboration is amazing. I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else.”

Ready for a career with impact? Applications are now open for Teach For Australia’s 2023 Leadership Development Program. Apply HERE

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