Working is a relief or casual teacher is probably not the dream teaching job most education graduates have in mind. Relief teachers work on a daily basis and get paid the same way. These positions are not permanent, and there’s no guarantee of work on any given day. However, relief teaching positions are rather booming in certain parts of Australia, especially as the student population increases in size. Though it may not be the ideal job you imagined, here are several reasons new teaching graduates should work as casual teachers:
Better Chance of Getting Hired
The main reason new graduated work as relief teachers is because it gives them experience. It’s very difficult to get professional experience otherwise. Once you have graduated with a degree in teaching, you have about 5 years to gain experience as a teacher. If you don’t by this time period, you are no longer considered suitable to be hired as a teacher. If you get a permanent position, you can gain the necessary professional training in about 3 years. But permanent positions are very difficult to secure. With a relief position, you can gain the same experience in about 5 years. Yes, it’s a long time. But it’s better than spending months looking for work. It’s definitely better than working in a non-teaching job while looking for a permanent position.
Best Likelihood of Working in Higher Paying Cities
If you want to live and work in Australia’s posh cities like Sydney and Melbourne, then expect to face highly competitive vacancies for permanent positions. You will likely be competing for similar positions with people with years of experience on you. Therefore, permanent positions are very difficult to secure. But casual teaching positions are plenty in cities. You can find advertisements for casual teachers Melbourne, Adelaide or Sydney in abundance. If you absolutely want to work as a teacher in a city, then a casual position is the best you can hope for as a new graduate.
Flexible Working Hours
Casual teachers are paid on a daily basis. That means you will have better flexibility in managing working hours and work days as a relief teacher. Permanent teachers have to be at school for all working days during a term. For new graduates who might also be pursuing other interests, this might not be a good option. If that’s the case with you, you can opt for a casual teaching position.
Build Relationships and Secure Good Recommendations
One of the biggest perks of casual teaching positions is that they give you a great chance for building relationships with schools and senior staff. If you work well, you might even get a glowing recommendation that might finally help you land a permanent position. You will also have access to principals or senior management staff of schools whom you can impress or befriend. These people you add to your network will be crucial in the future as you search for permanent work. Casual positions are a stepping stone for networking and getting your name in through the door so you can finally land your dream teaching job.
Sure, there are many things to complain about relief teaching jobs. But consider the above benefits, and use them to your advantage.