New $40,000 scholarships aim to address Teacher shortage in Australia

The 5,000 scholarship spots will be available for new teaching students studying from 2024

Students commencing teaching degrees in 2024 can now register for scholarships worth up to $40,000 which are designed to encourage more people to become teachers.

The federal government is delivering on its election promise to deliver the $160 million Commonwealth Teaching Scholarships Program.

In designing the scholarships, the government consulted with school principals and teachers, who spoke about the scholarships they received and how they often included a requirement to teach for a period of time.

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Minister for Education Jason Clare said, “Teachers do one of the most important jobs in the world, but we don’t have enough of them.

Primary Teachers; Image Source @Canva
Primary Teachers; Image Source @Canva

“I want more young people to leap out of high school and want to become a teacher, rather than a lawyer or a banker.

“Tying scholarships to a commitment to teach is an old-school idea that will help tackle today’s teacher workforce challenges.”

“And I want more people in the middle of their careers to consider becoming teachers.

“That’s what these scholarships are all about.

“They will help 5,000 of the best and brightest teaching students to complete their studies and begin changing lives in the schools who need it most.

Primary Teachers 1; Image Source @Canva
Primary Teachers 1; Image Source @Canva

Based on this feedback, the scholarships will include a ‘commitment to teach’ requirement, which means recipients must be willing to commit to teaching for four years (undergraduate) and two years (postgraduate) in government-run schools or early learning settings.

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The 5,000 scholarships will be available for new teaching students studying from 2024 and will be targeted at high-achieving school leavers, mid-career professionals, First Nations peoples, people with disabilities, people from whom English is an additional language or dialect and individuals from rural, regional and remote locations or from low socio-economic backgrounds.

“This is one part of our plan to tackle the teacher workforce shortage and builds on our reforms to teacher training, extra uni places for teaching and the Be that teacher campaign to elevate the profession,”

explained Minister Clare.

Scholarships of $40,000 each will be available for undergraduate teaching students over four years and $20,000 for postgraduate students over two years.

Primary Teachers 3; Image Source @Canva
Primary Teachers 3; Image Source @Canva

To encourage more teachers to live and work in remote Australia, students completing their final year professional experience placements in these communities may receive an additional top-up payment of $2,000. 

Additionally, this initiative complements the government’s existing effort to reduce HECS-HELP debt for educators working in extremely remote locations.

Those considering a career in teaching can verify whether they qualify and express their interest by visiting the education.gov.au/teaching-scholarships website. Interested candidates should submit their applications by the deadline of January 14, 2024.

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