Australian rural school struggling to recruit staff offers $30,000 bonus in bid to entice teachers

  • 23/05/2023
The school principal described the job as a "once-in-a-lifetime" role.
The school principal described the job as a "once-in-a-lifetime" role. Photo credit: Getty Images

A rural Australian school struggling to hire staff because of its remote location is offering a bonus of over AU$30,000 (NZ$31,731) in a bid to drive up recruitment. 

Toomelah Public School, which sits on the border between New South Wales (NSW) and Queensland (QLD), has a 100 percent Indigenous cohort.

7News reports its principal Gregory Bass described his school as a wonderful place to work, but said the school's rural location has made it difficult to attract new staff members.

In a promotional video shared online, Bass described the job as a "once-in-a-lifetime" role. 

"We are after the best, and that includes being an easy-going and flexible teacher willing to learn regardless of experience," Bass said.

"If you are looking for a fun, unique and exciting challenge as was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, please give us a call."

A spokesperson for the Education Department told 7News "getting qualified teachers into rural and remote schools is a priority".

"That's why we have the most comprehensive rural and remote incentive scheme in the country, including priority recruitment support and rural and remote incentives," the spokesperson said. 

"Under the rural teacher incentive payments, teachers can receive up to $40,000 (NZ$42,308) on top of their base salary annually, and an additional $20,000 (NZ$21,154)  if the position is eligible for a recruitment bonus."

The Education Department spokesperson said Toomelah Public School had one permanent vacancy at the moment.

"There are also a range of professional benefits, including additional personal and professional development leave days and priority transfer status."