Teaching in SA
I'm a secondary school teacher here in Adelaide, I arrived last july 07 and had a teaching job since oct 07.
Once registered what you need to do is get copies of your CV, registration, first aid cert, DECs letter, child mand forms, everything. Then drive around all the schools and give them all copies. The schools will then have you on record for TRT work (supply work). This is the best way to get work, pays well, and gets you known to all the schools, then when a school has a contract to offer and if they like you they will fight to get you.
DECs may try to get another teacher appointed, but if you make a really good impression as a TRT the school will write the job description to match you and only you.
Also DECs is now insisting every teacher puts their CV on line, so ensure your registration is done on their website.
Also, contracts do not mean you have a permanent job, it is only for a specified time, permanancy, anything from 3 to 10 years,is harder to get.
Try schools that are in socio/economic deprived areas, e.g. northern suburbs, they usually have more vacancies, and don't be put off by the fact they are in northern suburbs, I've work in good and bad schools in the UK, and I have to say the "bad" schools here are a breeze compared to UK, the staff are friendlier too.
Hope this helps.
When we registered, we too joined Switch.
OH got a bit of work through them...he is primary trained. We were renting in Sheidow Park and he was always sent to the north of the city. Woodforde, Golden Grove, etc. Lockleys was as close to our side of town as he ever got.
I had 1 days as TRT (secondary school teacher) - I had to teach Japanese to children at a private school in Glenelg in years R-6. The age group I have absolutely no experience of teaching.
From there I got a contract north of the city. I got it because I was the only person on Switch's books who specifically menioned RE. My subject and the school wanted someone who could.
I had 6 days TRT end of Oct/ beg of November and then nothing at all from 6th Nov onwards. Demoralising as I was ready and raring to go. I applied for a job in March, got an interview and was offered the job, starting in April. It is at a Catholic school and they knew the people I had given as referees. So again, the who you know thing really gives new meaning to the phrase.
I would encourage you to stick it out. Me? I put a bit of slap on, a smartish outfit and walked into as many schools as I could asking the name of the TRT co-ordinator. I wrote their name on the envelope I had with me which had a copy of my CV, Teacher Registration, First Aid certificate and DECS clearance. I asked to see them if they were available and had some teaching from it. Not as much as I had hoped but in term 4 the year 12s and year 11s go on study leave due to exams early in the term so all those staff are available.
Good luck. It took me a year to be working in teaching.
Well done Monica! I'm so glad you've got work and all is going well. I can't wait to get out there despite having some wobbles when I found out a little more about the job situation from the folk on the ground.
It does seem that most opportunities are in the north, nearer the city and in the Catholic schools. I think, like Nick said, it's hard to break into private teaching not having a priest who will do a ref for you, and not having exp. in Catholic schools. It's also a disadvantage being out in the sticks way down south and there are never any contracts in the 'southern sea and vines' schools. Funny how this is the area most families from the UK seem so lately to be attracted to settling in. I would move anywhere for a perm post but just to do TRT, no way. You have to think about moving all your stuff again, finding a rental to move into and the worst thing is dragging your kids out of their school and settling them in somewhere else. Oh to be young, free and single again! The responsibility of it all!
Have to agree, the beauratic red-tape getting registered is a nightmare. Eg.I had to get my university to produce written evidence that I had completed enough hours on my PGCE almost 20 years ago, to say my blood boiled is an understatement but it never helps to shoot the messenger. Andrew Dowling was sympathetic and helpful and used my previous experience as proof of being qualified. (I had been a head of an inner London school prior to arrival in Adelaide). I have applied for teaching positions and been knocked back prior to departure. I found the Catholic Education Office to be really helpful, they allocated a mentor for me and invited me on INSET to get me up to speed. At the time of writing I anm preparing to commence a contract position as an assistant principal. My advice. Keep plugging away, perseverence does pay off...after all it is what we encourage our kids to do ever day isn't it?
If any prespective teachers need any assiatance pleas don't hesitate to pm me.
Not being disrespectful here at all to you Mark, with all your experience etc. But have you seen how many spelling errors you included in the above post? How come you can find a job when I can't, when I can obviously spell heaps better than you?!
Originally Posted by Bodie
Perhaps, aside from encouraging us to persevere, you could follow a good teacher's advice and proof-read and edit your work before submitting it to the forum. :p
Before I arrived I contacted the placement officer at DECS, who was able to tell me about my particular speciality (I teach French and German). She said that there was no chance of obtaining a permanent position, as they had enough permanent French teachers in SA. I then looked into the private sector, and I got a job fairly easily at a large private school in the outer northern metropolitan area. There are several poms who work there (including my wife!) and our experience is valued. Although it is a religious school, many of the teachers have no religious affiliation, and their quality as teachers is more important than their denomination. Unlike DECS schools, private schools are allowed to select and retain the staff they want. I have also expanded my teaching experience by teaching History and English, as the school I work for does not teach German.
My experience was different to Libby's in that my UK First Aid Certificate was accepted here. I contacted the CEO, as I had hoped to work in a Catholic school, and they were happy with the St John Ambulance certificate.
I don't know about primary teaching, but I do think there are vacancies for teachers in the secondary sector in Independent schools. TRT is a good way in; most of the teachers who have been recruited have either done TRT or teaching practice at the school where I work.
Don't be afraid to apply for jobs on the internet. This is how I got my job, with a phone interview.
It does seem to be a LOT easier getting secondary posts than primary. Although I don't have that many years under my belt I consider myself an excellent teacher and have the references to prove it! Sick of being knocked back by DECS I applied to private schools too, but again, the primary schools can pick and choose their staff, and I clearly didn't have enough appeal to even merit an interview. I'm a bit stuck with being so far out as well, as most of the non-religious private schools are nearer the city and in the northern suburbs, so to go off and beg for TRT work from them is a bit impractical. I mean, I'm a WOMAN with kids - it's not like I'm the man of the house, who can swan off to his job and not give a second thought to his parental responsibilities! (This has always been a sore point with me, so no offence to the gents who have posted - who all have JOBS it seems.)
Originally Posted by Ian
I really can't understand why the church schools are such sticklers for only advertising for teachers with the affiliated beliefs - there were plenty of non-Catholic teachers working in Catholic schools in Brum, and all they had to do was sign the CES contract, not turn up for mass and confession every week to prove their zeal. It is always the INFLEXIBILITY apparent in every facet of the Aussie workplace that gets my blood up; their insistence on having the correct qualifications, and the fact that it is often WHO you know and not what that gets you a job.
When writing my post, I had two kids screaming in the background (although normally I take my parental responsibilities extremely seriously) so my apologies for my spelling mistakes. Also, the intention of my post was to offer some constructive advice and support - not to apply for a job otherwise I would naturally have taken the time to proofread. I was under the impression this was a forum - not an interviewing panel. My wife has also just been offered a job at a catholic school, although strangely enough, neither of us go to mass or confession every week nor did we previously know anyone in the catholic sector. As in my previous post, both my wife and I would like to say that there are opportunities being offered out there and, good spelling or not, available to overseas candidates. We know it's sometimes hard and frustrating but there are just as many good luck stories out there as bad. We have had no work for the last seven months and have at times been scared and desperate. I guess the best piece of advice we can offer is to be realistic and prepared for the financial and emotional strain, and know you are not going to walk straight into a job. However, perseverance (I hope spelt correctly this time) does pay off.
I frequently make typing mistakes especially when I am tired or when I am enthusiastic and get a bit carried away. The fact I make mistakes does not reflect my ability to be a good teacher, nor should it be a reflection on what kind of teacher I am. I am disappointed that anyone should be criticised on a forum as a professional by a professional.