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CST welcomes Australian colleagues

Five new recruits are acclimatising to school life – and weather – in the UK this month after arriving from Australia to take up teaching posts in four CST secondary schools.

Teachers Ruth Edge and Alison Elliot have joined the team at Reading-based Oakbank School, while Eloise Smith has been welcomed at St Mark’s Academy in Mitcham. Queensbury Academy in Dunstable has taken on Nathan Ford, and Simon Hu is settling in at Oxford Spires Academy. All of the new arrivals teach in one of the core subjects – English, maths and science.

The appointments were made as part of a Trust-wide initiative to help its schools find suitable candidates for key vacancies that they were struggling to fill in the face of the current national teacher recruitment crisis.

Working with Brisbane-based agency Point to Point, representatives from CST interviewed 26 potential candidates in Australia last September, before making their final selection. CST Acting Chief Executive Sheila McKenzie said: “In the current climate, we felt this offered an effective solution to the problem of unfilled vacancies in our schools. Australia and New Zealand have a surplus of highly qualified teachers at the moment, and we were impressed by the calibre of all the candidates we saw.”

Oakbank Principal Maggie Segrove said: We have been delighted with the appointment of Ruth, our Head of Maths, and our teacher of English, Alison. They have settled in quickly and are so passionate and enthusiastic about teaching. Both are a fantastic addition to the Oakbank team."

Olly Button, Principal at Queensbury Academy, said: “We have recruited three teachers from Australia over the course of this academic year. All have been in shortage subject areas and have proven to be not only excellent classroom practitioners but also flexible, resourceful and student-focused. They have integrated well into their respective departments and have brought extra energy and enthusiasm to our school.”

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