Inspiring the Next Generation of Teachers

Inspiring the Next Generation of Teachers

The school believes taking on trainees is an important way to inspire the next generation to pursue a career in teaching.

“It is so important that we continue to give opportunities to young people who are thinking about pursuing a career in education because we need to support the next generation of young teachers,” said Mr Sandy Clark, HPE teacher and host supervisor at St Cuthbert’s Catholic School.

St Cuthbert’s Catholic School in Tasmania has taken on young people as Education Support Trainees since 2018.

“Trainees come through the program, they see how the school works, they learn the skills, they have a positive experience and then they are inspired to teach and these are the people that will continue to help the education system thrive. Young, passionate and dedicated teachers who have had a taste of the industry and know it’s the path for them,” he added.

Josh Williams was the first trainee who came on board and completed his Sport and Recreation traineeship both at St Cuthbert’s and St John’s Catholic School. After graduating, he went on to pursue a career in teaching. Their second Sport and Recreation trainee, Matt McGuinness, also sought a successful career after completing and was recruited to the North Melbourne Football Club in last year’s draft.

“Our past trainees have been excellent and have gone onto amazing career paths.”

“What is excellent about the Traineeship program is that it gives young people a valuable experience in teaching which provides a gateway into the industry. Upon completing his traineeship and pursuing further studies in Education, Josh, got a job right away as a Teacher’s Assistant and that’s because he had that important experience working with kids in a school.”

The School’s current trainee is also proving to be a superstar amongst staff and students. Grace Jacobson, a gun netball player who was drafted to play for the Tasmanian state netball team, started her traineeship this year.

“The students absolutely love Grace; she brings so much positivity to the School. She also has amazing netball skills and helps the girls’ team excel in the sport.”

As well as mentoring students in netball, Grace works closely with the students and helps with their reading programs, assists with sports activities and has an input in the sports programs. But the support she gives Mr Clark in the classroom is one of her greatest strengths.

“I have a class of around 30 students, and if I hold a lesson on the fundamental movement skill of bouncing and I am on my own, it would be hard to focus on the group of students that do it well and those that need extra support.

Having Grace there, I can send the group of students who might be struggling to her and she reteaches the activity and I can continue to focus on the students who are excelling rather than leave them on their own. This is a really powerful tool because it gives me extra support and progresses the student’s skills much faster. It’s just another one of the great reasons why taking on trainees is brilliant!”

The school believes one of the other main reasons why the program works so well is because trainees act as positive role models for the students and play an essential part in their development.

“The students really look up to the trainees especially because they are closer in age to the teachers. Our trainees develop a strong rapport with the students and in turn the students can really open up to the trainees which helps them progress in their personal development and learning.

All our trainees have been fantastic role models. They uphold great values, are passionate in their role and keep motivated, which rubs off on students and staff.”

The School’s positive experiences will continue to see more Education Support Trainees come through the program. Mr Clark firmly believes that trainees “add real value to the school” and play an essential role in improving the learning environment.

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Original 9 July 2020 Marissa Pagliarello, Edited 16 Jun 2023