Male Teachers Leaving Public Sector, Says ABS

April 1, 2012 Updated: April 1, 2012

Australia is seeing a shortage of male teachers in public schools, with many turning to the private sector for better pay.

Data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed that the number of men teaching in the non-government sector has grown by 25 per cent since 2001. Public schools have seen a drop of 2 per cent over the same period.

The data suggest that the traditionally female-dominated teaching profession is failing to lure men, who are eager to earn higher wages offered by private schools.

In 2011 ABS data shows there were 15,274 male teachers at public schools, about 27 per cent of the public teaching workforce. This is down from figures in 2001, when male teachers made up around 31 per cent of teaching staff in the public sector.

By comparison, in 2001 there were 9734 male teachers in the non-government sector, making up about 30 per cent of the private sector teaching workforce.

Meanwhile, West Australian teachers have become the highest paid in the country, after striking a deal with the WA Teacher’s Union last week.

The Union has agreed to a 12 per cent rise over three years. Education Minister Liz Constable said the deal would ensure WA’s 27,000 teachers and administrators would remain the highest paid in Australia.

“The majority of teachers will be earning in excess of $99,000 per annum by December 2013,” Dr Constable said, according to AAP.

The new pay deal includes wage increases of 3.75 per cent in the first year, four per cent in the second year, and 4.25 per cent in the third year.

Victorian teachers are expected to strike in late May over unresolved pay rises. They are calling for a 30 per cent pay increase and say the Government has broken their election promise of making Vic teachers the highest paid in the country.

After more than seven months of negotiations, the Australian Education Union state council voted unanimously on March 30 to take industrial action if their pay dispute was not resolved by April 16, reports The Age.