The Victorian government has announced $1.3 million funding to place 80 intern teachers from Teach for Australia into select public schools next year.
Education minister James Merlino announced the funding in a statement on Monday and said the ‘high-achieving student teachers’ would help bolster student outcomes in disadvantaged communities.
“Every Victorian child deserves access to top-quality education, no matter where they live or what their background, and that’s why we’re investing in programs that deliver excellent teachers to the classrooms that need them most,” Merlino said.
The intern teachers or ‘associates’ are drawn from subject-matter experts who apply to complete master of teaching (professional practice) with the Australian Catholic University.
As part of achieving their qualification, participants serve two placements serving government high schools in regional, rural and disadvantaged communities.
The Teach for Australia associates also receive training from teaching and leadership mentors before completing their degree.
“We’re thrilled to be helping place an extra 80 enthusiastic student teachers into government secondary schools across regional and rural areas and disadvantaged communities, where they will not only help our kids thrive but in turn receive the support and mentorship they need to become great school leaders,” Merlino added.
Victoria was the first state to partner with Teach for Australia when it was established in 2010. The not-for-profit organisation aims to use high-quality teachers and leaders to ‘break the cycle of educational inequality’ experienced by disadvantaged schools, and those located in regional and remote areas.
To date more than 600 Teach for Australia associates have been placed in over 100 public Victorian high schools.
The additional Victorian associates will commence their placements from term 1 in 2022.