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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 05 Hansard (Tuesday, 11 May 2021) . . Page.. 1260 ..


MR HANSON: Minister, what are you specifically doing to improve science in ACT schools?

MS BERRY: I can speak to two examples of where the ACT government has supported science and education in STEM across the ACT. Our two future skills academies—one on the north side at Lake Ginninderra college and one on the south side at Caroline Chisholm school—both provide specialised, expert support from science professionals to teachers to learn in that environment and then take those learnings back to their school communities.

MR PARTON: Minister, what are you specifically doing to improve literacy in ACT schools?

MS BERRY: I am making sure that teachers have everything that they need to deliver a great education to our students.

Education—teachers

MR DAVIS: My question is to the minister for education. Minister, given the high rate of teacher turnover in Australia, what mechanisms does the ACT government have in place to ensure the retention of our high-quality educators and staff in public schools?

MS BERRY: ACT public schools are growing incredibly with population growth. We have made a commitment to hire 400 new teachers in the ACT to make sure that every school has a great teaching and learning experience. We are ensuring that our teaching professionals get that support through the Teacher Quality Institute, which, Madam Speaker, when you were the education minister, you had an integral role in setting it up. It is an important part of a teacher’s professional development, every step of the way.

In addition we work very closely with the Australian Education Union and their members to ensure that their members are supported through industrial arrangements, that their health and wellbeing are supported, and that they have and maintain the highest pay rates in the country.

MR DAVIS: Minister, is the ACT government actively pursuing information on the reasons why educators are leaving the teaching profession within the first five years of their career?

MS BERRY: That is not actually the case for the ACT. In fact what we are seeing is that teachers are staying longer in the ACT—longer than the five years that is being reported nationally as when teachers leave. That would be because we do provide those great working environments, through our great partnerships with the Australian Education Union.

In addition to that, we make sure that our beginning teachers are supported, before they even get into the classroom. That is through our Affiliated Schools Program with


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