Teachers will be offered a hefty pay packet to work in regional Victoria during a statewide school shortage.
Casual relief teachers from Melbourne or other states will be offered up to $700 a day to teach in regional Victorian schools.
The financial incentive will be subsidised by the Victorian Department of Education in an effort to assist schools struggling to fill crucial roles.
The department has announced it will contribute more than $300 a day for city-based teachers who travel to country areas to support schools.
Teachers will also receive their usual daily pay rates of around $400, so eligible teachers will be paid almost double their current wage.
Anzuk education recruitment team leader Tenielle Henderson said the financial incentive was necessary to combat the worrying shortage of regional teachers.
“Education has been significantly impacted by the effects of the pandemic,” she said in a statement.
“While schools across the state have all been affected, schools in regional Victoria have been hit the hardest.”
She said the funds would cover travel expenses for interstate or metropolitan teachers “plus some extra spending money”.
Schools are battling a dire shortage of teachers due to sickness and absenteeism.
With Covid and flu cases running rampant, some regional principals have reported stepping up to teach classes.
Schools are also struggling with the widespread loss of staff due to the state’s Covid vaccination requirements. Approximately 420 full-time public school teachers in Victoria were stood down in April after failing to comply with the jab mandates.
The government-subsided incentive of $700 a day will only apply to teachers relocating from metro areas, interstate, or overseas who work in a regional role for at least two weeks.
The offer will likely continue through term 3.
The incentive comes with a statewide push to staff schools. Teachers who fill hard-to-staff long-term positions, such as regional teaching roles, are already eligible for a payment of between $9000 and $50,000.
If teachers remain in the role, they will be paid a retention bonus of $9000 a year after the second, third, and fourth year of working at the regional school.
The Department of Education also notes teachers can apply for funds to cover relocation costs.
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