I bet we have the same problem here

Universities and tertiary institutions churn out thousands of people qualified for jobs where only dozens exist. I’ll bet there are more people training to be journalists than jobs exist, and the same goes for teachers.

In Australia the cost of this is enormous  but I imagine the costs of proving training and student loans is likewise enormous with little if any prospect of the majority of then working in their chosen field.

TENS of millions of dollars are being wasted training teachers who do not enter a classroom, with federal and state governments spending at least $16,500 on each student teacher every year despite up to 90 per cent in some states failing to find a job.

Universities graduate about 16,000 new teachers every year across the nation, half of whom are primary teachers, but an oversupply in the workforce means the vast majority of new teachers struggle to find work in schools. 

Shortages exist in maths and science teaching, but across the rest of the profession universities are producing more teachers than required, particularly in primary teaching, with tens of thousands of teachers on waiting lists in the biggest states.

The true extent of the imbalance in the teaching workforce is unknown, with a Productivity Commission inquiry last year unable to compile a national picture.

But about 90 per cent of teachers graduating university in NSW and Queensland fail to find a job, while about 40,000 teachers in NSW and 16,000 teachers in Queensland are on departmental waiting lists for a permanent job.

The Victorian education department says it employed about half its teaching graduates last year, but this still left about 2500 new teachers looking for a job.


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  • JonathanP

    Theres really only 2 options then isnt there.

    1. You can only start a teaching education provided that you can get a position, needs to be pre arranged with a school etc.

    2. You let free market ideals reign and let the best candidate for the position get it and all others miss out, education or not.

    The only problem is either way the tax payer (sorry NETT TAXPAYER…..yawn) will foot the bill.
    You want good teachers they are going to need help getting through that education instead of worrying where their next meal is coming from or how they’re going to pay rent or we will end up with more of the teachers that everyone here seems to despise so much.

  • cows4me

    How many will only work on the Gold Coast or Sydney? If the taxpayer picks up the bill the recipient is duty bound to offer his/her services where needed, not in the bright lights or white sandy beaches. Same should apply in this joint.

  • Saccharomyces

    Just another example of the commodification of education. The tertiary institutions don’t care, they just want the $$, so they’ll accommodate as many students as they can.

    The only way to end it is to make tertiary education unfunded entirely. Want a qualification, pay for it yourself (or get a private loan). The uni’s shouldn’t have funding either.

    The market will do the rest……

  • island time

    Geography is a bit of a weak link for some. Maybe it should be a compulsory paper. Stuff website claims that Christmas Island is near North west Australia. It is bloody miles away. They need to at least define “near”.

  • Start booting out the useless teachers and let in some fresh blood.

    Another plus for performance pay/targets.

  • Mediaan

    Thanks, good point, needs saying.

    If the universities are given funding at all, I think it should be paid per student retrospectively, after the former student (and graduate) gets a real job in the home economy and holds it for three months.

    Then we would see some useful graduates emerging.