- Charles Sturt University teaching graduates are crucial in meeting the demand for teaching professionals in regional areas
- More than 700 students graduated from the School of Education and the School of Teacher Education during 2020
- Charles Sturt teaching graduates enjoy the highest level of graduate employment in New South Wales, with 87 per cent securing full-time employment within four months of graduation
As new students across the state start the school year, so too do hundreds of Charles Sturt University graduate teachers who play a crucial role in filling positions in regional and remote areas.
Associate Professor David Smith, Head of the School of Education, said the majority of Charles Sturt teaching students are from regional areas, and following graduation they return to the regions to play an important role in the community.
“We also give students that have never been in a regional setting an opportunity to experience the sense of community support for teachers in a smaller centre,” he said.
As a member of the Rural and Regional Education Advisory Group, Professor Smith said he had an extensive understanding of the challenges regional schools face recruiting teachers, particularly in specialist subject areas ─ Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).
“Charles Sturt University is in an important position to help build the teaching population in regional New South Wales,” Professor Smith said.
“The University’s education schools are focussed on attracting people to the teaching profession by delivering courses that are flexible, progressive, and relevant to what the regional teaching sector needs.”
Charles Sturt is one of the few universities in Australia to offer a Bachelor of Education (K-12) and the Bachelor of Education (Technology and Applied Studies) program.
“Graduates of the K-12 program have the qualifications to teach at primary or secondary schools, making them more responsive to fit the demands of regional communities,” Professor Smith said.
“The Technology and Applied Studies program provides a pathway for people with TAFE qualifications to transition to a school setting, as it recognises their prior experience and learning.”
Professor Smith said Charles Sturt education courses are underpinned by education research, ensuring students are applying the latest insight into their regional classroom setting.
Charles Sturt teaching graduates enjoy the highest level of full-time graduate employment in New South Wales, with 87 per cent securing employment within four months of graduation.
“We have set a very high expectation of our students, and that is reflected in the demand for our graduates,” Professor Smith said.
“We help students meet these standards by providing an exceptional level of support throughout their degree.
“Students have a liaison officer throughout work placements, and placements are managed by professional workplace learning coordinators. Academics also support students in developing teaching content for their classes.”
Professor Smith said the Charles Sturt experience helps graduate teachers settle quickly into their new teaching roles.
“Many of our graduates keep in touch with academics, sharing stories of the new schools and communities they are now part of,” he said.