Monitoring Teacher Supply 2006 Publications
The 2006 Monitoring Teacher Supply report provides the Ministry with a snapshot of the number of entitlement staffing vacancies and re-advertised vacancies in schools at the start of Term 1, how these vacancies are being covered and, in the case of secondary schools, in what subject areas pressure points are occurring.
Author(s): Lisa Ng, Research Division, Ministry of Education.
Date Published: 2006
Since 1997, the Research Division of the Ministry of Education has undertaken a survey1 of all state and state integrated schools at the beginning of each school year to monitor the staffing situation in New Zealand schools. The one-page survey form provides the Ministry with a snapshot of the number of entitlement2 staffing vacancies and re-advertised vacancies in schools at the start of Term 1, how these vacancies are being covered, and in the case of secondary schools, in what subject areas vacancies are occurring. While school vacancies are also monitored through the March roll returns3 and through the advertisements in the Education Gazette this survey provides the Ministry with valuable vacancy information early in the school year.
The 2006 survey was completed by 92 percent of all schools (92% of primary schools and 91% of secondary schools). The response rate is slightly higher than in the 2005 survey which was completed by 89 percent of all schools.
The 2006 results show that vacancies in primary schools declined by 0.1 percent from the previous year while vacancies in secondary schools remained at a similar level as in 2005. Ten percent of primary schools had vacancies at the beginning of the school year; the vacancies within these schools represented 0.8 percent of all entitlement positions in 2006. Thirty-one percent of secondary schools had vacancies at the beginning of the school year; the vacancies represented 1.0 percent of all entitlement positions in 2006.The number of re-advertised positions is considered to be an indication of "hard-to-staff" positions. In 2006, the proportions of all entitlement positions that were re-advertised remained the same as in the previous year (0.3%). At the beginning of the 2006 school year, 2 percent of all primary schools had re-advertised positions (compared with 2.9% in 2005) and 16 percent of all secondary schools had re-advertised positions (compared with 16.5% in 2005). Twenty-two percent of all primary school vacancies, and 0.2 percent of all entitlement positions in primary schools were re-advertised (compared with 29% of all primary vacancies and 0.3% of all entitlement positions in 2005). In secondary schools, 41 percent of all vacancies and 0.4 percent of all entitlement positions were re-advertised in 2006 (compared with 47% of all vacancies and 0.5% of all entitlement positions in 2005).
Further results from the survey in 2006 indicated that:
- The Invercargill and the Whangarei local office areas recorded the highest proportion of vacancies of all entitlement positions. In 2006, 1 percent of entitlement positions in those offices were vacant. Whangarei local office also recorded the highest proportion of re-advertised positions (0.7% of all entitlement positions).
- As in previous years, the proportion of vacancies and re-advertised vacancies were greater in schools with larger concentrations of Māori students and in schools in lower socio-economic areas (deciles 1-3 schools).
- In 2006, the proportion of vacancies increased slightly in deciles 8-10 schools (from 0.6% in 2005 to 0.7% in 2006) while they decreased slightly in deciles 1-3 schools (from 1.4% in 2005 to 1.3% in 2006).
- A similar proportion of lower decile schools (deciles 1-3) reported experiencing vacancies in 2006 (15.0%) compared with 2005 (15.5%). However, fewer lower decile schools reported having re-advertised vacancies in 2006 (6.1%) than in 2005 (7.4%).
- The use of trained relief staff (employed for 10 school weeks or less) was the most common measure used to cover vacancies in both primary (58.6% of all primary vacancies were covered in this way) and secondary (43.0%) schools. This measure was used less by both primary and secondary schools in 2006 than in 2005.
- In 2006, the subject areas most sought after in secondary schools were technology (19.7% of all entitlement vacancies), mathematics (11.4%), sciences (9.6%), English (8.2%), and physical education (6.6%).
- There were 1,034 overseas teachers (who had taught for the first time New Zealand in 2004, 2005, or 2006) teaching here at the beginning of 2006. Nearly three-quarters (72.9%) of these were teaching in secondary schools.
- In 2006, there were 2,344 first year beginning teachers. The number of beginning teachers in primary schools increased from 1,288 in 2005 to 1,363 in 2006 while the number in secondary schools decreased from 1,020 in 2005 to 981 in 2006.
- As found in previous surveys, beginning teachers were more likely to be employed in lower decile schools (deciles 1-3) and in schools with larger concentrations of Māori students.
- The highest proportions of beginning teachers were employed in the Invercargill (11.1%), Auckland South (5.7%), Auckland North (5.3%), and Wellington (5.2%) local office areas.
The 2006 data showed that even though secondary student numbers are expected to continue to grow in the short term, secondary vacancies remain at a similar level to the last year (2005). Since 1996, the Ministry of Education has introduced a range of initiatives to increase the supply of teachers. These initiatives4 include scholarships, loan support, allowances for priority subject areas, retraining for former secondary teachers, returning to teaching allowances, national relocation grants to encourage teachers to take up hard-to-staff positions, conversion courses to assist primary teachers with degree qualifications to teach in secondary schools, and international relocation grants. The Ministry of Education will continue to closely monitor the teacher supply situation in New Zealand and the outcomes of the initiatives it has in place to increase the supply of secondary teachers.
- Often referred to as the Teacher Vacancy Survey.
- It is acknowledged that some schools may have vacancies at the beginning of Term 1 above their current staffing entitlement but it was beyond the scope of the survey in its present format to collect information on these vacancies.
- These returns are managed by the Data Management and Analysis Division of the Ministry of Education.
- More information on these initiatives can be obtained from the TeachNZ website. TeachNZ is a unit of the Ministry of Education.
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