Auckland teacher bonding scheme rolled out to all schools

by Laura Tupou / 25 August, 2017

Every Auckland school is "hard to staff" say principals. Photo / Getty Images

Not all principals are welcoming the expansion of the bonding scheme.

Principals in Auckland's low-decile schools are dismayed at the government's new plan to tackle the teacher shortage by extending its cash offer to all schools in the city.

The Ministry of Education's voluntary bonding scheme, offering a one-off bonus of more than $10,000, currently applies only to newly qualified teachers at low-decile 'hard to staff' schools, but next year it will be rolled out across Auckland.

Auckland Primary Principals Association president Kevin Bush praised the move.

"Every Auckland school is a 'hard to staff' school so [the Education Minister] told us [on Wednesday] that it would be available to all Auckland schools."

However, at the first-ever teacher recruitment expo in Auckland yesterday, principals in the poorer areas were worried their jobs had just got a lot harder.

Rowandale School principal Karl Vasau said he would lose a critical selling point for his decile 1 school at a time when the pool of graduates was shrinking.

"As low-decile schools, sometimes we have that stigma or perception that it's extremely hard to work in our schools," he said.

"So that bonding scheme was an incentive for people that were courageous and wanted to come out and see that that was absolutely wrong.

"It's just something that I could use today at this event as an enticement to get someone to come and work for me."

Susan Dunlop, the principal of Yendarra School in Ōtara, which is also decile 1, was at the expo trying to find six new teachers for next year.

She said the change would be a huge hit to the school's recruitment.

"People have this wrong perception about low-decile schools and it's been fantastic that we have been able to offer something else.

"Fantastic for other Auckland schools - absolutely delighted - but for us, not such good news."

Her school was already struggling and the situation was "dire", she said.

"The fact that other teachers are taking on extra children when someone might be away sick, or we have sick people who are coming in and probably need to be at home. That's the impact it's actually having, it's huge."

The voluntary bonding scheme was introduced across the country in 2009.

Eligible teachers get $10,500 at the end of their third year teaching at a low-decile or hard-to-staff school. They get a further $3500 at the end of their fourth and fifth years.

Education Minister Nikki Kaye said the scheme would be available for all new Auckland teachers from next year, but the amount of money might be slightly less.

She was still working out the details, but said it would definitely be introduced regardless of the election outcome.

Mr Bush said about 600 graduates would get it.

"It means that some of those people that are thinking that 'I can't afford to live in Auckland' might think 'well actually I can because I'm going to get this extra bit of money'.

"And they can do with it what they like - they can use it to pay off some of their student loan, they can use it to help a little bit towards a deposit for a house."

However, most of the graduates talking to the principals at yesterday's expo wanted to stay in Auckland anyway, so news of the extended scheme came as an added bonus.

"I was always set on staying in Auckland so now that that has been implemented into all schools across Auckland, it is definitely going to ground me in Auckland and keep me here," third-year Bachelor of Education student Noah Meggitt said.

Minister Nikki Kaye said rolling out the scheme across Auckland was part of the $20 million commitment to fix teacher shortages.

This article was originally published by RNZ.

MostReadArticlesCollectionWidget - Most Read - Used in articles
AdvertModule - Advert - M-Rec / Halfpage

Latest

New Zealanders love a good ghost story
86094 2018-01-22 00:00:00Z History

New Zealanders love a good ghost story

by Redmer Yska

We New Zealanders are known for being down to earth and no-nonsense, but there's a surprising number of Kiwi stories with a supernatural element.

Read more
How to avoid burnout at work
86051 2018-01-22 00:00:00Z Psychology

How to avoid burnout at work

by Marc Wilson

Taking positive steps at work will help keep weariness at bay.

Read more
A puppy-buyer's guide to getting a new dog
86100 2018-01-21 00:00:00Z Social issues

A puppy-buyer's guide to getting a new dog

by Sally Blundell

Just saying “oh, how adorable” is not all you need to do before taking on a new dog.

Read more
Tarawera eruption: What was the mysterious ghost canoe?
86076 2018-01-21 00:00:00Z History

Tarawera eruption: What was the mysterious ghost c…

by Dale Williams

For more than 130 years, lovers of ghost stories have enjoyed talking about one of our most enduring mysteries: the Phantom Canoe of Lake Tarawera.

Read more
How to get the health benefits of nuts without the cost
85733 2018-01-21 00:00:00Z Nutrition

How to get the health benefits of nuts without the…

by Jennifer Bowden

You need 30g of nuts a day to maximise their health benefits. Here's some tips on how to do it without putting a hole in your wallet.

Read more
Model car collector Winton Amies: 'I'm just a big kid collecting toys'
84783 2018-01-21 00:00:00Z Life in NZ

Model car collector Winton Amies: 'I'm just a big …

by Guy Frederick

When Amies moved to Naseby’s old butcher shop 22 years ago, he brought 1200 model cars with him; now he has more than 3000.

Read more
Trade Me bans sale of pugs, British and French bulldogs
86110 2018-01-20 10:49:32Z Business

Trade Me bans sale of pugs, British and French bul…

by Sally Blundell

As a result of growing concern over the welfare of pugs, British and French bulldogs, Trade Me has announced they're banning the sale of these breeds.

Read more
Puppy farming: New Zealand's secret dog-breeding shame
86056 2018-01-20 00:00:00Z Currently

Puppy farming: New Zealand's secret dog-breeding s…

by Sally Blundell

NZ has an unregulated puppy-breeding industry where unscrupulous operators can flourish, so why aren’t we following the lead of overseas governments?

Read more