“Everyone agrees that a good education is vitally important for our kids, our society and our economy,” Universities Australia Chief Executive Catriona Jackson said.
“Good teachers inspire and change lives.
“Yet Australia is facing an acute teachers’ shortage, with declining numbers of people training as a teacher and an increase in those leaving the profession early.
“The problem is especially pronounced in our regional communities, reducing opportunities for kids to study core subjects like mathematics.
“We must address the barriers to attracting and retaining good teachers – from the status of the teaching profession and their workloads to how much they are paid and are able to progress.
“Universities alone can’t solve the problem, we need to work together with governments, schools and unions.
“For example, we can help create a degree apprenticeship system where, like any other apprenticeship, student teachers have the opportunity to do more training in schools with a job secured at the end of it.
“We can also help expand and scale-up programs to get student teachers into classrooms sooner and for longer. All of this while keeping a close eye on quality.
“In the lead up to the September Jobs and Skills Summit, and this week’s national meeting of education ministers, these are just a few practical solutions that should be achievable with the help of state and territory governments.
“Looking after our hardworking teachers and ensuring the best and brightest are educating our kids is a national effort.”