PRIORITY 2: INSPIRATIONAL TEACHING AND LEADERSHIP

Photo of a male teacher and two female college students working together, seated at a desk in the classroom

Back to B.1 Organisational Overview

OUR MAJOR ACHIEVEMENTS

Achieving our vision for our children and young people rests on the strength of our teaching and our leadership.

QUALITY TEACHING

  • Provided teachers with two resources: Great Teachers by Design: A systemic approach to ensuring highly effective teachers in Canberra Public Schools and Great Teaching by Design: Evidence-based practices to improve student outcomes in Canberra’s classrooms. These resources aim to provide our teachers with a range of evidence-based strategies to improve educational outcomes for ACT Public School students. These resources can be found at:
    http://www.education.act.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/854465/Great-Teachers-by-Design.pdf
    http://www.education.act.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0006/854466/Great-Teaching-by-Design.pdf
  • Learning outcomes for students are supported by building the capabilities of teachers and school leaders through professional learning. Topics covered included the Australian Curriculum; literacy and numeracy; gifted and talented students; and English as an Additional Language or Dialect.
  • In November 2015, the Directorate applied a core skills (literacy and numeracy) test for teachers seeking to work in ACT Public Schools.
  • Classroom teacher recruitment continued to be conducted at individual school sites in 2015-16. This was underpinned by active engagement by each school executive to take ownership of building, developing and retaining effective workforce profiles to meet their community needs.
  • Over 250 teachers and principals from 33 participating primary and secondary ACT Public Schools showcased successful school based literacy programs and initiatives at the Principals as Literacy Leaders (PALLs) Learning Fair.
  • In 2015-16, funds from the Teachers Professional Learning Fund (TPLF) were allocated to assist with meeting the professional development needs of teaching staff, including those in office environments. In addition, funds were allocated from the Principals Professional Learning Fund (PPLF) to support professional learning needs of school network leaders and principals.

Photo of seven students and their teacher, working together at a desk in the school library

LEADERSHIP CAPABILITY

  • In 2015 the Australian Principal Standard and Leadership Profiles (Leadership Profiles) were embedded into a professional conversation between School Network Leaders (SNLs) and principals. The Leadership Profiles brought the principal’s leadership strengths, challenges and aspirations into sharper focus.
  • The 2016 ACT Public Schools’ Leadership Summit focused on the themes of ‘Challenging, Engaging, Innovating and Transforming’.
  • In December 2015, 29 participants successfully completed the Aspiring Leaders Program.
  • In January 2016, the Aspiring Leaders Program was evaluated and found to be a high quality, evidence-based program that provided multiple benefits to participants in the development of leadership knowledge, skills and attributes. The evaluation made 20 recommendations to ensure that the Aspiring Leaders Program forms a valuable part of the ACT Education Directorate’s strategy to build the capacity of teachers and leaders.

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

  • In 2016, teachers who achieved a certification at the Highly Accomplished and Lead career stages of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers were rewarded with an additional salary increment, or equivalent one year allowance if at the top of the Classroom Teacher salary scale or a School Leader C.
  • The ACT Teacher Scholarship Program continued to provide Directorate teachers and school leaders with support to undertake further study, training and/or research that will lead to improved student learning outcomes. In the 2015-16 financial year, the Directorate awarded 25 scholarships valued at $107,000.

Photo of three teachers, two female and one male, collaborating during the Aspiring Leaders program

OUR CHALLENGES

  • To successfully implement a new Leadership Development Strategy in all ACT Public Schools.
  • Continue to ensure teacher recruits have high quality literacy and numeracy skills.
  • To implement strategies that enable teachers to develop and share deep understanding of how students learn subject content.

OUR PLANS FOR THE NEXT 12 MONTHS

  • Strengthen coaching, mentoring professional learning and performance management of teachers.
  • Support schools to develop, document and implement improvement strategies.
  • Strengthening a system-wide principal induction program that builds a shared vision and mission, cultivates values and behaviours, articulates the functions of the organisation and provides tools to support staff in the workplace.
  • Develop a system approach to leadership development activities, building a common understanding and shared purpose of what it means to be a school leader in the ACT.
  • Manage the next two cohorts of the Teachers Scholarship program, including promotion of priority areas for study; and further strengthening program management oversight and selection processes.
  • Implementation of training and development to support the implementation of the Student Resource Allocation program and Schools for All.
  • Implementation of the Leadership Development Strategy.
  • Implement Reconciliation- Keeping it Alive 2016-2018, with a focus on further developing cultural competency of all staff.

FAST FACTS

2014-152015-16Change % Change
Number of staff in the Directorate 6,189 6,316 127 2.1%
Number of school leaders and teachers in Public Schools 4,285 4,278 -7 -0.2%
Number of female teachers 2,712 2,709 -3 -0.1%
Number of male teachers 802 807 5 0.6%
Number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees 72 91 19 26.4%
Number of staff with more than 10 years service 2,295 2,372 77 3.4%
Number of teacher contracts issued 726 749 23 3.2%
Average years of service of Directorate staff 9.0 9.0 0 0.0%

PRINCIPALS AS LITERACY LEADERS

The Directorate introduced the Principals as Literacy Leaders (PALLs) program in 2013 with the aim of further developing the capabilities of ACT public primary school principals as effective literacy leaders. In 2015, the program was extended to include ACT public secondary schools. Throughout 2015, as part of the PALLs program, 3,292 teachers participated in Reading Institutes across the ACT Public School sector.

During 2015, seven modules of professional learning were provided for principals, deputy principals and members of participating schools’ literacy teams with a focus on “What makes an effective leader in learning?”

A highlight of the program included a Reading and Literacy Institute Day at the Australian National University, attended by 723 teachers.

Feedback from participants, highlighting the positive impact of the PALLs ACT Program on
their own leadership of learning and literacy, included:

  • “Kindergarten reading benchmark data has shown amazingly quick growth as a result of the interventions and approaches we have put in place from our PALLs work. It is so exciting.”
  • “The improvement in student writing in subjects other than English can already be seen with the focus on teachers understanding more about the literacy of their discipline. Teachers and students understand more about discipline-specific vocabulary and its application in their writing.”

Photo of four female school executives collaborating during an activity, as part of the Principals as Literacy Leaders (PALLs) programPhoto of a presenter delivering a workshop to college and high school executives during the Principals as Literacy Leaders (PALLs) program

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