West coast schools eligible for priority staffing status

  • Wyatt Creech

Forty eight schools on the West Coast of the South Island are to get extra help to attract teachers, Education Minister Wyatt Creech said today.

The schools will now be automatically eligible for priority staffing status.

The status has been given in recognition of the difficulties the West Coast

schools currently face when recruiting permanent and long term relieving teachers, Mr Creech said.

Some schools in some areas of the country are considered more attractive to

teach at than others. The priority staffing scheme is an attempt to make sure students arent disadvantaged by their location.

In 1995 the Ministry of Education designated certain schools in the Northland, Auckland, Tokoroa, Gisborne and Wairoa regions as in need of priority staffing assistance.

A range of initiatives has been developed as an incentive to attract teachers to the specific schools.

They include:

  • Limited Relocation Grant of up to $3,000.
  • Recruitment allowance of $2,500 available to a number of priority staffing schools.
  • Finders Fees of up to $1,300 where overseas teachers are recruited though a Ministry approved agency.

The Ministry is constantly monitoring the demand for, and supply of, teachers around the country and ensuring the initiatives in the Teacher Supply strategy respond to the areas of need, Mr Creech said.

Implementing the priority staffing scheme in the West Coast schools will go a long way towards getting the teachers those schools and students need.