Accreditation in NSW Public Schools

Direction and guidance on teacher accreditation within NSW public schools, which is regulated and overseen by the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA).

Changes since previous version

2023 Mar 09 - minor wording changes in policy statement.

Document history

2022 Dec 8 - consolidated the Accreditation at Proficient Teacher in NSW Public Schools policy with the Accreditation at Highly Accomplished Teacher and Lead Teacher in NSW Public Schools policy. Changed the policy name to Accreditation in NSW Public Schools. The update has streamlined the policy and removed duplication between the department and the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA). It names NESA as the regulator and provides implementation support for schools. It also highlights NESA's changed role as the Teacher Accreditation Authority and clarifies the roles of school employees. Improved resources aim to reduce time needed to read accreditation information.

2022 Sep 27 - updated contact details in policy statement.

2022 Feb 04 - policy and procedures updated to reflect the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) policy that teachers must undertake professional development in 4 priority areas. They also reflect the NESA definitions 'Accredited Professional Development' (PD) and 'Elective' (PD), which now respectively replace 'Registered PD' and 'Teacher identified PD'. Changes to the definitions cover teachers employed under the Teacher Services Act 1980 (NSW).

2020 May 27 - minor text and edit update to implementation documents: Accreditation at Proficient Teacher Procedures and Maintenance of Accreditation at Proficient teacher, Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher procedures.

Reference to a new department maintenance procedural document and changes to position titles, governing authority name and nomenclature.

2019 Apr 02 - amendment to phone and email contact information, addition of NESA Proficient Teacher Accreditation Policy to section 3. Context, and, addition of Proficient Teacher Accreditation Policy to related documents

2019 Feb 20 - reference number changed to PD number.

2019 Feb 18 - hyperlinks under Context 3.1 were broken and have been fixed and reference to implementation date removed as this is drawn from metadata.

2019 Feb 06 - change to contact name, phone number and addition of an email address.

Version 6: Accreditation at Proficient Teacher procedures Change to service requirements (revised August 2015).

Version 5: Amended to reflect delegation to principal as Teacher Accreditation Authority for accreditation at Proficient Teacher level (revised July 2015).

Version 4: Updated to reflect formation of Board of Studies, Teaching and Educational Standards, streamlined procedures and revised delegations (revised February 2014).

Version 3: Responsibilities, delegations and process for the Maintenance of Accreditation at Professional Competence (revised February 2008).

Version 2: Responsibilities and delegations so far as management of internal review process and delegation to revoke accreditation (revised May 2007).

Superseded documents

PD/2005/0165 Accreditation of Teachers in NSW Government Schools Policy
PD/2005/0165 Accreditation at Proficient Teacher in NSW Government Schools Policy

  1. Policy statement
    1. The department assists teachers and principals in NSW public schools and early childhood services to deliver child and student outcomes by supporting continued performance, growth and development. Accreditation and performance and development processes work together to drive professional development and support teacher and student growth.
    2. NESA regulates teacher accreditation and makes accreditation decisions in NSW. Teachers must refer to the NSW Teacher Accreditation Manual for accreditation requirements.
    3. Under the Teacher Accreditation Act 2004 all teachers must meet the department's requirements for employment and approval to teach to be employed in NSW public schools or early childhood education centres.
    4. Principals are responsible for ensuring that anyone employed as a teacher in their school/service holds active accreditation with NESA.
    5. The department is the employer under the Teacher Accreditation Act 2004.
  2. Audience and applicability
    1. All NSW Department of Education staff in NSW public schools and early childhood services participating in the teacher accreditation and maintenance processes.
  3. Context
    1. This policy is to be read in conjunction with:
  4. Responsibilities and delegations
    1. Teachers:
      1. understand and complete all the requirements for accreditation, re-accreditation or maintenance of accreditation within the applicable timeframe as outlined by NESA
      2. who proceed with voluntary accreditation at the higher career stages, manage the accreditation process and maintenance of accreditation at the required level, as set out by NESA. Teachers who do not maintain accreditation at the higher level will revert to Proficient Teacher
      3. identify and complete their performance and development requirements in line with the department's Performance and Development Framework STAFF ONLY (PDF 626 KB) to meet the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers effectively.
    2. Accreditation Supervisors:
      1. may be a principal or a position delegated by the principal, responsible for supporting teachers with accreditation
      2. support Provisional and Conditional teachers to develop their practice and complete the requirements to achieve accreditation at Proficient Teacher
      3. provide teachers with adequate supervision, advice, ongoing feedback and support during their accreditation period.
    3. Principals:
      1. must implement this policy in schools and adhere to departmental and NESA procedures for teacher accreditation
      2. inform the department of any issues with a teacher's practice that may impact the accreditation recommendation/attestation as and when they arise and provide relevant support to the teacher at risk of not meeting the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers.
    4. Teacher Approvals:
      1. ensure that all teachers are accredited by NESA at the point of employment.
    5. Performance and Accreditation:
      1. oversee the performance and development processes for all staff
      2. must have internal procedures for implementing NESA's requirements for achieving and maintaining Proficient Teacher and Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher (HALT), including nominating HALT assessors, and must provide all teachers with a copy/access to all relevant procedures.
  5. Monitoring and review
    1. The Executive Director, People Culture and Capability, monitors the implementation of this policy, regularly reviews its contents to ensure relevance and accuracy, and updates it as needed.
  6. Contact
    Performance and Accreditation

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