A new program providing CQUniversity pre-service teachers markedly increased time in classrooms has attracted great interest following a highly successful pilot trial this year.
Catholic Education - Diocese of Rockhampton (CEDR) has partnered with CQU to offer the Career Assistance Program (CAP) to successful applicants in the third and fourth year of their teaching degree, providing financial and practical support.
CQUniversity student and CAP participant Hayley Wornum said she would highly recommend the program to fellow students.
“CAP provides a flexibility for learning, through a hands-on approach in a realistic setting,” Hayley said.
She said applicants should have a willingness to be open to learning, and a desire to be involved and immersed in the program.
CEDR Assistant Director: Teaching and Learning, Carmel Kriz, said the CAP enabled Catholic Education to nurture and support pre-service teachers more effectively than a short-term practicum placement, leading to beneficial outcomes for students and families.
“All of the research shows us that the quality of teaching makes the greatest difference for learning outcomes of young people. We want the very best teachers for our students,” Mrs Kriz said.
“Our CAP allows us to foster high-quality teachers and immerse them in the practices and routines that we need in our teachers and that are not always explored fully in a theoretical educational course,” Mrs Kriz said.
CAP participants can access up to two years of being in a school community working alongside mentor teachers, building skills and confidence and gaining a deeper understanding of the knowledge required of a contemporary teacher.
“Our CAP participants have the opportunity to grow in their professionalism on a daily basis, building confidence and competence,” Mrs Kriz.
Mrs Kriz said the program helps pre-service teachers learn in collaboration with a mentor teacher who supports them in a meaningful way. This is complemented by support from school leadership teams and professional collegiality and collaboration from the whole school staff.
“It’s a great opportunity for students to learn over time, with expert support, in a very safe and nurturing environment,” Mrs Kriz said.
“We are in a position where we have great belief in our teachers and great faith in our teachers. With that comes the recognition that we need to provide support. That’s our work, to support teachers to be the very best that they can be.”
“I think our Career Assistance Program gets pre-service teachers off to an amazing start,” Mrs Kriz said.
Further information regarding the Career Assistance Program including the application process was available on the CEDR website at www.rok.catholic.edu.au .