Supporting more teachers in very remote communities

Media Release
  • Minister for Education

Students attending very remote schools will benefit from teachers staying at their schools longer.

The Morrison Government today introduced legislation to waive the HELP debt for teachers who worked at very remote schools.

The program has also been extended to cover early childhood teachers.

Minister for Education Dan Tehan said the Morrison Government would wipe up to five years’ worth of HELP debt from students who spend at least four years working in very remote education settings.

The program will also assist more than 3,500 educators in very remote settings annually by removing indexation on their HELP debt.

"Our Government believes that every child, no matter where they live, should have access to a world-class education," Mr Tehan said.

"We’re supporting more teachers to spend more time in very remote schools where they can help improve student outcomes.

"Waiving their student debt will be an added incentive for teachers to work in the bush. It will prompt new teachers to consider a stint working in the bush, and will also attract remote community members into a teaching career."

To be eligible teachers must work in an eligible location for at least four years, commencing on or after the start of the 2019 school year, with an equivalent pro-rata rate for part-time teachers. Eligible areas are those defined as very remote by the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) Remoteness Structure (Vol 5), which is available on the Australian Bureau of Statistics website. Up to a maximum of five years tuition fees could be waived for initial teacher education which was deferred as a HELP loan. This includes a HECS-HELP loan, a FEE-HELP loan, or a combination of both.

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