Getting started with the Department of Education: What you need to know
Join the union
- The SSTUWA is the only industrial body that represents your rights and entitlements as a teacher, ensuring we continue to be the highest paid teachers in Australia.
- You will have access to free, prompt, professional advice from our Member Assist call centre, there to answer calls every week day from 8.30am until 4.30pm.
- We provide Education and Training opportunities including our free PD in the Pub sessions which cover a range of professional topics.
- You can join the New Educator Network WA Facebook page where you can benefit from the guidance of the Growth Team, as well as over 1300 NEN members from across WA.
All of these reasons plus countless more are why it is so important and beneficial for you to be a member of your union.
Cost of joining the SSTUWA
1.1% of your salary or if you are a casual employee doing relief work it is a base rate of $8.44 per fortnight. Membership fees are tax deductable.
How to Join
Your union is dedicated to increasing the number of permanent employees working within the teaching profession in Western Australia.
An offer of permanent work may depend on a variety of factors, including your suitability rating and the location preferences that you indicate on your application.
Both the department and the union have a commitment to aim for a permanent workforce of 90 per cent, to increase job security.
Probation and Induction
All new employees of the Department of Education are required to undergo a period of probation upon appointment. The length of this probationary period is no more than 12 months. This can vary according to the type and location of the position.
Upon the discretion (of whom) probation may be extended up to a maximum of two years by the employer (Department of Education) in accordance with the provisions of clause 8 of the Award. Probation can last for up to two years Appointment shall be reconfirmed by the department in writing two weeks prior to the completion of the probationary period.
The probationary period is also dependent upon the successful completion of a process of performance management, which is managed at the school/worksite level.
The length and content of a teacher’s performance management plan will depend on the type of contract that they are on and their background experience.
Performance management is intended for use as a guide to self-reflection and planning for graduate teachers.
Features of an Induction Program
Your induction program through the department should at least cover the following areas:
- School and Employing authority.
- Expectations of New Educators.
- Guidance in fulfilling duties.
- The school’s resources, support and specialist staff.
- Student assessment procedures.
All new employees will undertake the normal performance management process which will be recorded accordingly. An agreed action plan will form a part of this record.
The process of performance management will culminate in a recommendation of confirmation or termination of employment through Teacher Appraisal and Fitness Declaration forms. These are usually completed in a teacher’s second (CTP, MTP and RTS locations) or third year of employment and generally no later than the third term of the school year.
Unsatisfactory performance will be addressed through the policies outlined in Managing Unsatisfactory and Substandard Performance of Teaching Staff and School Administrators – Policies and Procedures.
Performance management will be monitored according to the workplace and the individual needs of employees. It includes observation of classroom performance, monitoring of planning and assessment and professional support/mentoring to provide opportunities for ongoing professional growth.
Your union is able to provide probationary teachers and administrator members with support and advice about the activities which should be undertaken as a part of the induction and probation process.
Furthermore, your union is able to provide specific advice to members who may be confronted by negative outcomes from the probation process. Contact Member Assist on (08) 9210 6060.
All teachers are also required to register with the Teachers Registration Board of Western Australia (TRBWA).
This registration has been legislated by the State Government and is therefore mandatory.
Initially your teacher registration is provisional. It is expected that by the end of your third year or after 200 casual working days you will have obtained enough evidence in correlation with the Australian Institute of Training and School Leadership’s (AITSL) Standards to apply for full teacher registration. For more information regarding the transition to full registration contact the TRBWA.
The Teacher Placement System
The Department has a Recruitment Selection and Appointment of Teaching Staff Policy. It details the Western Australian recruitment system comprehensively. It can be accessed through the department’s website http://www.det.wa.edu.au/policies/detcms/portal/
As a graduate you can apply to the graduate teacher pool and the fixed term teacher pool or any other advertised pool or position.
For non-Independent Public Schools, regional executive directors and principals must:
- Assess redeployees referred for placement.
- Select and appoint the most suitable redeployee.
- Where a redeployee is appointed, complete RAMS actions and a movement advice in HRMIS.
- If a redeployee is not appointed a suitable employee can be appointed from a different pool.
For Independent Public Schools, regional executive directors and principals are not required to recruit from the redeployee pool and selection is highly based on your application to the pool or position advertised.
The SSTUWA provide many PD opportunities for their members to assist with writing job applications and to improve interview skills which are highly valuable when applying for merit select schools.
Remote Teaching Service
The purpose of the Remote Teaching Service (RTS) in Western Australian is to enhance educational equity and the achievement of student outcomes in the most remote schools in the State.
The conditions outlined in our agreement have been designed to attract a large pool of quality teachers and compensate those who are selected for the unique working conditions in RTS schools.
RTS schools are distinctly different from other schools in terms of:
- Distance from regional centre or distance from Perth.
- Situation i.e. typically in a community setting or very small town.
- Educational needs of the students.
- Cultural, social, climatic and recreational environment.
The incentives offered to the teachers in the RTS have been structured to address the requirements of teachers working and living in what, by any standards, are remote locations.
If you need information and support talk to your union representative at your workplace or call SSTUWA Member Assist on 9210 6060