26 September 2023

Education to ease the teacher burden

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Teachers across the State are to enjoy a reduced workload this school Term as the Department of Education continues its audit of the administrative tasks teachers are required to do.

Announcing immediate changes to reduce the administrative burden on teachers, the Minister for Education and Early Learning, Prue Car said the Department was undertaking a line-by-line audit of all administrative tasks that teachers are required to do, to deliver a reduction of five hours of administrative work per week.

Ms Car said the first round of changes, now in effect, included the halving of more than 70 mandated changes to policies and processes that were due to roll out in Term 2, to only those that were essential and had minimal impact on frontline teachers.

She said all pilots and programs due to start this term had been paused and teachers would be consulted on which ones to continue.

“The review has looked at ways to remove, simplify or digitise tasks, with a focus on culling administrative tasks that add no benefit to student outcomes,” Ms Car said.

“Among the changes stopped are activities relating to the surveying of teachers, the reporting of information, and administrative work,” she said.

“For example, the use of the principal development framework, utilities reporting, telephony changes and a homework policy review.”

Ms Car said a roundtable would be held in the coming weeks with all the key partners in public education, including the NSW Teachers Federation, to agree on future actions targeting the workload challenge and to lift the status of the profession.

She said further actions to support teachers included expanding the school counselling service, strengthening wellbeing support for teachers to address burnout, improving the way schools support students with additional needs and simplifying reporting to parents.

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