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by Cheryl Lacey, DSJ, Thought Starters On Education, ©2023

(Sep. 12, 2023) — THE TEACHER SHORTAGE

Schools are places where an agreed curriculum is taught by capable teachers.

It couldn’t be more straightforward.

There’s value when schools are working just right or good enough.

The benefit is that every citizen contributes responsibly to their community while striving toward personal goals.

When they’re not – value is compromised.

What gets in the way of value?

To put it simply; it’s bandaids.

These are ill-considered, irrational, quick and dirty whims to resolve a perceived problem. They look good, cover up the core issues, and are either not applied or ripped off and are usually replaced – rather quickly – with another…and so on.

The latest bandaid

To resolve the teacher shortage, one Australian state has decided to throw around $400 million or $4500 per year at people commencing a two or four-year teaching degree next year.

They’ll graduate in 2026 and beyond. This won’t resolve the teacher shortage today.

What’s Possible!

Your school board or council comprises community members representing your school community.

Parents and teachers get to sit around the table together to set the strategy and direction for your school.

Here are some actions your school councils/boards can take right now.

  1. STOP offering subjects where capable teachers are not available.
  2. OFFER only those subjects that current capable teachers can teach
  3. STAGGER classes where necessary – consider 8 am and 6 pm days
  4. BAN teacher overtime.
  5. STAGGER the duration of the school year through student holidays, including Christmas vacation.
  6. REDISTRIBUTE funds for qualified/retired professionals to tutor

These possibilities may be ‘out-of-the-box’; but you know that bandaids don’t work.

Schools are places where an agreed curriculum is taught by capable teachers.


So every citizen can contribute responsibly to their community while striving toward their personal goals!

Next Steps

  1. Form a group.
  2. Start a conversation.
  3. Discuss what’s possible.
  4. Have a ‘this can work’ mindset
  5. Take the lead on education in your community.

Read more here.

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