Share your story and be that teacher

A new federal recruitment campaign encourages people to share their story about a special teacher.

A man holds a phone while a group of people pose for a selfie. A man holds a phone while a group of people pose for a selfie.
Image: Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Federal Education Minister Jason Clare and Deputy Premier Prue Car with teachers at Kirrawee High School. Kirrawee High teacher Kerrie-Ann Lacey is in green.

A new federal campaign aims to raise the status of the teaching profession across the country.

The Be that teacher campaign is a joint initiative of the Commonwealth and state and territory governments, and features eight teachers, one from each jurisdiction.

Federal Education Minister Jason Clare said the campaign was designed to encourage more Australians to pursue a career in teaching.

“While we don’t remember much from when we were little, most of us can remember that teacher who helped us to aim higher, be braver and work harder,” he said.

“Recent surveys show most teachers don't think that what they do is valued by the community. We need to change that.

“I want more young Australians to want to be a teacher. To be that teacher, who inspires and changes young lives.” 

Kerri-Ann Lacey from Kirrawee High School was that teacher for one of her students, a young man named Michael, who had a star named after Mrs Lacey through Sydney Observatory.

“All kids go through tough patches, but one thing about teaching is being able to look at a student and try and guide that mind as best you can,” she said.

“I first met Michael in Year 7. There were some challenges. When he graduated, he presented me with a star. I used to tell him he was a star, so typical of him.

“The fact that somebody thought enough of what I had contributed to their life that they wanted to put my name on a star, it’s pretty humbling.

“There is not another profession that touches the human soul as this does.”

Mrs Lacey’s story will feature in the new campaign, which will run across social media, billboards, bus stops and other outdoor locations.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Education and Early Learning Prue Car said the NSW and Australian governments were committed to working hand-in-hand to address teacher shortage challenges.

“Restoring pride and respect to the teaching profession is key to our plan, and I am delighted to see real teachers being celebrated in this ad campaign,” she said.

“We all have a teacher who changed the course of our lives for the better, and mine was my English teacher Mrs Elborough.

“Teaching is an admirable profession, and I encourage anybody interested in education and making a difference to consider this rewarding vocation for their future.”

As part of the campaign, teachers and members of the public are being encouraged to share their stories.

“Every teacher has a story to share, and everyone has a story to share about a special teacher,” Mr Clare said.

To share a story, or find out more about becoming a teacher, visit the website.

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