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There's nothing casual about teaching
Why should casual teachers develop a PDP and engage in the Performance and Development Framework?
While accreditation and maintaining accreditation at proficient and the Performance and Development Framework (P&DF) are two separate processes, they should not be looked at in isolation. Engaging in the development of a Performance Development Plan (PDP) and the associated cycle of plan, implement and review as part of the P&DF can support the gaining and maintaining of accreditation at proficient for casual teachers.
Gaining accreditation at proficient
All teachers, including casual teachers employed regularly, require the ongoing professional support of a supervisor. Supervisors play a critical role in supporting casual teachers to work towards their accreditation.
The P&DF process supports supervisors to have meaningful conversations with teachers about their practice and to support their professional growth and development towards achievement of accreditation at proficient. The Department recommends that supervisors use the performance and development process to support accreditation requirements. Casual teachers should include a goal in their PDP stating they aim to achieve accreditation at proficient.
When a casual teacher has satisfied the service requirements they should approach the principal, who they are requesting to act as the Teacher Accreditation Authority (TAA), for support to achieve accreditation. This will initially be approached through a conversation, and should be confirmed by the teacher in writing. Part of that conversation would include the teacher’s completed PDP cycle/s.
Maintaining practice at Proficient Teacher
In the final three months of a teacher’s maintenance period, the teacher must declare that they have maintained their practice at the Standards for Proficient Teacher, and completed all requirements for maintenance of accreditation, in their NESA online account.
After the teacher has completed their maintenance of accreditation declaration, and before the end of their maintenance period, a principal, who will be the TAA, must attest as to whether or not the teacher has continued to maintain their practice against the standards. Completed Performance Development Plans from previous years could be the basis for conversations with the principal. The teacher could produce the evidence collected as part of the P&DF cycle to support the casual teacher’s declaration to the principal that they have maintained their practice at proficient against the standards.
The Maintenance of Teacher Accreditation Policy (January 2018) states: “The activities and practices that form the basis of this attestation will be comprised of processes that are in place in the school/service, and will not generate additional requirements for the teacher.”
Casual teachers engage in a range of professional activities and practices in the course of their work that allow them to demonstrate that their practice continues to meet the standards, including participation in a performance and development process.
Intermittent casual teachers
Teachers working intermittently or infrequently, less than 42 days in the year, are not required to complete a PDP; however they are still required to maintain accreditation at proficient against the standards and engage with the P&DF.
NESA will require a principal, as a TAA, to attest to the declaration that a casual teacher who works intermittently has maintained their practice against the standards. The most practicable way for a principal to make an attestation of a casual teacher’s maintenance of accreditation against the standards is through that teacher’s participation in the P&DF.
The maintenance period is seven years. Casual teachers should continue to undertake professional learning, a minimum of 50 registered hours and the remaining hours as teacher-identified hours.
Federation presents seminars for casual and temporary teachers on a number of issues, all of which are registered hoursGo to nswtf.org.au/services/seminars/casual-temporary-teachers.html for details.
The Journal of Professional Learning (JPL) provides articles each semester that can be used to complete Teacher-Identified hours towards maintenance of accreditation.
By developing a Performance Development Plan with a supervisor, completing the phases and having their performance reviewed against their goals consistent with the relevant cycle taking into to account the type of casual teaching undertaken by the teacher, provides evidence which, when needed, can form the basis of conversations for accreditation and maintenance of accreditation at proficient.