Plan to keep top teachers in the classroom

A better system for rewarding and retaining excellent teachers will focus on keeping more of our best teachers in front of students.

A row of desks with the government logo superimposed on the image. A row of desks with the government logo superimposed on the image.

New, higher paid roles for outstanding teachers could be introduced in NSW under ground-breaking plans being driven by leading educational expert Professor John Hattie.

Minister for Education and Early Learning Sarah Mitchell said creating a stronger career path for classroom teachers that better rewards excellence in teaching was key to modernising our education system. 

“NSW has some of the best teachers in the world, but they often leave the classroom and move into management roles to secure higher pay and career progression,” Ms Mitchell said. 

“The structure of our teaching profession should reflect our teachers, by being innovative, ambitious and modern, keeping more of our best teachers in the classroom.

“This model is not ‘performance pay,’ this is about expanding the career options for teachers and keeping our best in the classroom.” 

Newly graduated teachers in NSW start on a competitive annual salary of $73,737, which sees them out-earn graduates entering many other professions. A classroom teacher’s pay reaches a maximum of $117,060 if they gain accreditation as Highly Accomplished or Lead Teacher, or $126,528 if they take on additional responsibilities as an Assistant Principal.

A better system for rewarding and retaining excellent teachers could also help attract more people to teaching profession.

The Department of Education will produce a policy paper on the issue with initial recommendations later this year. 

Professor John Hattie, a world-leading expert on education outcomes and student learning, is providing independent expert advice on the reform.

“The rewarding of excellence and expertise is the right topic to realise high standards and maximise positive impacts on students,” Professor Hattie said.

“It is exciting to be part of these NSW discussions and I look forward to hearing the views of the profession.”

The paper will also draw on input from some of the most experienced educators in our public education system.

The Government will carry out extensive public consultation, including with teachers, parents and other stakeholders, before implementing any changes.

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