Historic teacher education reforms to be implemented

Media Release
  • Minister for Education and Training

Key recommendations of the Coalition’s Teacher Education Ministerial Advisory Group report that will transform teacher education in Australia have been unanimously adopted today by the Education Council.

This agreement is further progress on another significant commitment of the Coalition Government in education.

The Minister for Education and Training, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP thanked the states and territories for their commitment to work with the Commonwealth on improving teacher training.

The Council agreed to:

• National implementation of a test to ensure students completing initial teacher education courses are in the top 30 per cent of our country in personal literacy and numeracy;
• Enhanced and more transparent selection criteria for prospective students of teacher education programmes; and
• Reaccrediting existing teacher education courses with a new strengthened and streamlined accreditation to ensure graduating students are classroom ready.

Today’s agreement by all education ministers to adopt the national Literacy and Numeracy Test and include it in the Accreditation of Initial Teacher Education Programmes in Australia; Standards and Procedures will ensure from 1 July 2016 that beginning teachers have a high level of personal literacy and numeracy.

“The national Literacy and Numeracy Test will provide greater employer and community confidence that beginning teachers entering our schools have the literacy and numeracy skills necessary to carry out the intellectual demands of teaching”, Mr Pyne said.

“The Coalition Government funded the pilot Literacy and Numeracy Test which is being run in seven capital cities and two regional cities, to ensure that the test is fit for purpose before full implementation.

“Students are flocking to sit the test, the first round was over-subscribed and places for the second round of testing to commence next week were filled within a week of registrations opening,” he said.

The Education Council’s unanimous endorsement of the new Action Now: Selection of entrants into initial teacher education – Guidelines, underlines their commitment to quality teaching.

“We need to be attracting students who possess the right motivation and aptitude to become an effective teacher,” Mr Pyne said.

Education ministers also agreed to strengthening and streamlining the accreditation of teacher education courses, which will mean that all courses will be of a high standard.

“This will give students the confidence that when they graduate, they will be classroom-ready”, said Mr Pyne.

Under the Students First approach, the Australian Government will continue to work with the states and territories by focusing on four key areas that will make a positive difference to students:

• teacher quality
• principal autonomy
• parental engagement
• strengthening the curriculum.

For further information, visit: www.studentsfirst.gov.au.

For more information

Media Contact: media@education.gov.au
Non-media queries: 1300 566 046