Govt sending DET staff back to school

Govt sending DET staff back to school

Up to 300 South Australian Education Department staff who are qualified teachers will be placed in the state’s schools as early as 2016, Education and Child Services Department chief executive, Tony Harrison, told ABC radio on Friday.

"Our performance, whichever way you measure it, has not been acceptable. We need to do more for our children," Harrison said.

"Some of them [teachers], unfortunately, may go back into schools and it may not be their first choice."

The decision was part of a reform package announced to more than 1,000 teachers and principals on Friday.

Included in the package will be the consolidation of some offices as well as the creation of an Aboriginal education directorate.

Harrison said the department aims to raise $190m in savings over the next four years. However, he rejected suggestions the reforms could cost existing teachers and graduates their jobs.

However, the Australian Education Union (AEU) state president, David Smith, called the viability of the plan into question.

"If you've got people who are policy or curriculum writers, having them in an individual school might not be much help," Smith said.

State opposition education spokesperson, David Pisoni, said that in order for the plan to work, principals would need to be the ones choosing the staff going into their schools.

"We said that we wanted to see more resources into schools at the expense of head office. The key here is will principals get to choose those people. Will they get the right skills they need?"