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Government to contract private sector workers to teach math and science

Published:Wednesday | February 3, 2016 | 2:08 PM
More than 500 math and science teachers have left local classrooms within the last 12 months for opportunities overseas.

The government is to enter into contracts with persons in the private sector with tertiary-level qualifications in science and math areas as part of short-term measures to boost the number of those teachers in the school system. 

Education minister, Ronald Thwaites, made the announcement in the House of Representatives yesterday. 

He also announced that the government will enter into contracts with suitably qualified retired teachers on a part-time basis. 

The minister says the measures will be implemented while additional long term measures are being pursued. 

Thwaites says persons from the private sector will be given short courses designed to prepare them for the clasroom. 

Those individuals will be engaged to teach grades 10-13. 

More than 500 math and science teachers have left local classrooms within the last 12 months for opportunities overseas.

Only 22 per cent of 1,800 math teachers in the secondary school system are appropriately qualified to teach the subject. 

The new measures come after Thwaites' ministry backtracked on a proposal to pay science and math teachers more than their colleagues teaching other subjects.