There's nothing casual about teaching

June 14, 2018

Long service leave for casual teachers

Long service leave (LSL) is available to casual teachers as a payout when the casual teacher ceases employment with the Department and in some circumstances it may also be taken as leave.

A casual teacher may take a period of LSL during a temporary teacher engagement as long as the period of LSL falls entirely within the start and finish date of the engagement.

Assessing service for LSL is quite complex as there have been various changes to provision over time.


In order to be eligible to take LSL or for a payout of the value of the LSL leave upon cessation of employment with the Department, a teacher must have completed 10 or more years of service. This does not mean the teacher has been a casual teacher for 10 years, but that the teacher’s accumulated service adds up to 10 school years.

Casual teaching service is calculated differently depending how and when the casual work was undertaken. This falls into date and category of the work as follows:

  • For service prior to 1 April, 1963 — a proportion of four-and-a-half calendar days for each year of service.
  • For service on or after 1 April, 1963 — a proportion of six calendar days for each year of service.
  • For full-time supply casual service from 1 September, 1970, to 19 May, 1985 — a proportion of six calendar days for each year of service up to 10 years; a proportion of 15 calendar days for each year of service in excess of 10 years.
  • For service on or after 20 May, 1985 — two months for 10 years of service and thereafter on a proportionate basis of six calendar days for each additional year of service.

Casual teachers should acquaint themselves with the various provisions, depending on when they undertook their service by accessing Section 9.7.3 of the Department’s Casual Teachers Handbook

Can I lose my accrued long service leave entitlement because of a break in service as a casual teacher?

The Department has always vigorously applied the break in service provision in the Long Service Leave Act. Breaks of service of greater than two months will negate and eliminate the period of casual service worked prior to the break. The casual service worked prior to the break will not count towards long service leave accreditation. In other words, if a casual teacher has a break of more than two months between casual engagements the previous service does not count for long service leave purposes.

The two-month break in service provision does not include:

  • breaks due to school vacations
  • those breaks in service caused by periods of temporary teaching engagements with the Department
  • any period of unpaid maternity leave (since 9 October, 2000). Casual teachers who have had periods of unpaid maternity leave, whether formally applied for or not, should inform the Department.

Casual supply teaching worked prior to May 1985 will continue to be counted as service for long service leave purposes regardless of any break in service.

“On cessation of employment, casual teachers who consider that they have established an entitlement, should make application to Casual Employees Payroll Services [make an online enquiry to EdConnect] for payment of the monetary value of long service leave.

“If available, a Record of Employment detailing any previous permanent or temporary teaching service with the Department should be submitted with such application. On the death of a casual teacher who has an entitlement to long service leave the Department will, upon written request, pay to the teacher’s estate the monetary value of the entitlement.” (Casual Teachers Handbook 2004)

Julie Moon City Organiser and Officer responsible for casual and temporary teacher