The Andrews Labor Government is strengthening regulation of school teaching qualifications to ensure kids get high-quality teachers and high-quality education.
Minister for Education James Merlino will introduce a Bill into Parliament today to enhance the powers of the Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) to regulate school teaching degrees.
The Bill also gives the VIT the power to regulate pathway programs into school teaching degrees. These programs provide students with preparation and an avenue for entry into a teaching course.
The changes will ensure that the programs properly equip prospective students for a bachelor-level ITE program.
The VIT will also gain explicit powers to endorse continuing education programs for school and early childhood teachers, to give greater assurance to teachers that these programs meet an objective quality threshold. The Bill sets out processes for providers to seek endorsement of post graduate continuing education programs if they wish.
Other changes under the Bill include:
- clarifying and streamlining VIT’s inquiry and investigation process, so the VIT can deal more efficiently with its disciplinary case load;
- removing a person’s eligibility for provisional registration where they have previously been provisionally registered for six years, except in special circumstances, so that teachers who have not satisfied the requirements for full registration are not able to continue teaching indefinitely under consecutive grants of provisional registration;
- empowering VIT to reinstate a person’s registration within 12 months of expiry in special circumstances, reducing the administrative burden for the VIT and for affected teachers; and
- broadening VIT’s powers to share information, including with other regulators and interstate teacher registration authorities, in response to a Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse recommendation to improve child safety.
Victoria was the first jurisdiction in Australia to introduce minimum standards for entry into initial teacher education programs, with the introduction of the minimum ATAR in 2018 and the personal attributes assessment.
Changes in the Bill will complement and reinforce those entry requirements and continue to ensure the quality of school teaching and the status of the profession.
As stated by Minister for Education James Merlino
“We know the difference a great teacher can make – that’s why we’re making sure teachers get high-quality training, so they can deliver a high-quality education to our children.”
“We recognise the great work of our tertiary sector in preparing our aspiring teachers, and we are looking forward to working with providers to develop the next generation of teachers for our schools and students.”