Great teachers inspire their students to learn. They can, and do, make a difference to the quality of a student's life both inside and outside the school.
In July 2012, I started a serious conversation about what we can do to improve the quality of teaching and learning in NSW schools when I released the Great Teaching, Inspired Learning Discussion paper. Later in the year I also commissioned the new Centre for Education Statistics and Evaluation to prepare an analysis of what the research tells us about effective teaching.
I have looked closely at the consultation feedback and the research evidence and there are some clear messages for Government. We need to do more to lift the quality of entrants into teacher education. We need to strengthen the standard of teacher training they receive. We need to provide better support for beginning teachers in their early years. We need to then offer them a career progression which recognises their achievements against professional teaching standards. We need simplified and streamlined processes and systems. And we need school leaders who can lead the professional collaboration and ongoing learning of teachers in their schools.
I have considered carefully the panel's recommendations to me and accepted them in full. The recommendations complement the NSW Government's existing commitment to raising student performance in literacy and numeracy as outlined in our Literacy and Numeracy Action Plan.
The actions in this paper now form the NSW Government's blueprint for improving the quality of teaching and learning in our schools.
This blueprint sets out the aspirations for all NSW schools. It is not intended to specify detail as to implementation; this is rightly the job of individual school authorities. I am committed to working with the government and non-government school authorities, NSW teacher education providers and key education stakeholders to turn these aspirations into real actions.
I have already asked the Department of Education and Communities, the Board of Studies NSW and the NSW Institute of Teachers to prepare implementation plans based on this blueprint. In acknowledging the independence of the non-government sector and the Council of Deans of Education, I will seek their advice about implementation within their contexts. I value the collaborative relationship I have with these critical partners and look forward to discussing the actions in this paper with them.
I want to thank everyone for their constructive feedback and meaningful insights throughout this process. I also want to thank the three authors of the discussion paper and this blueprint for their expert and considered advice. I am confident that we now have a world-class blueprint - one that gives us the greatest opportunity to improve teacher effectiveness so that NSW students are well prepared for success in work and in life.
Adrian Piccoli MP
Minister for Education