GRIFFITH schools are struggling desperately to attract teachers – more so than most other regions in the state – a report by the NSW Auditor-General has revealed.
A report on the management of casual teachers found that four country towns – Broken Hill, Moree, Griffith and Dubbo – found it extremely difficult to fill vacant teacher positions.
It also found the Department of Education continued to hire out casual teachers with poor performance reviews, despite some schools turning them down.
Deputy Auditor-General Tony Whitfield found that the four towns, including Griffith, accounted for a third of unsuccessful attempts by the call centre to fill casual teacher vacancies.
Other rural principals said they did not even ask the department for help because there were no casual or temporary teachers in their area.
Member for Murrumbidgee and state education minister Adrian Piccoli said the issue with Griffith was that the city is not considered remote, but is still isolated and a long way from capital cities.
“We are a fair way from Sydney but we’re not remote enough to have the high incentives they have in places like Condobolin or Hay, for instance,” Mr Piccoli said.
“There are more incentives in Leeton than there are in Griffith.
“Even Darlington Point has more incentives yet there have been quite a few teachers who live in Griffith but work in Darlington Point.” Mr Piccoli said the department was working towards attracting more teachers to rural and regional towns – such as Griffith.
“It has always been difficult to get teachers here – it’s difficult to find staff in all sorts of professions,” he said.
“We are working on a rural and remote education strategy.”