Maths and statistics teachers around the country will be baffled by the government’s latest forecast of teachers
required out to 2025. Instead of quantifying the shortage, the Ministry of Education has done its sums under the
assumption that there were the correct number of secondary teachers in 2017. Secondary teachers know this is not
PPTA president Jack Boyle says, “Quality data and and forecasting are essential to create a plan for the teaching
workforce. Acknowledging the challenges for the profession is an important first step. Using flawed assumptions to begin
with isn’t the best start, though.”
However, even the ministry’s conservative forecasts suggest that New Zealand secondary schools will be short 2,200
teachers by 2025.
“What this data does show very clearly is that we need to recruit a lot more teachers,and do everything we can to make
it a career they want to stay in,” Boyle says.
Evidence from overseas studies shows that teacher shortages will never be addressed if pay and conditions for the
profession aren’t attractive. PPTA believes this newly released information should be all the government needs to step
up and make the corrections that need to be made for the secondary teaching profession.
“We also hope a comprehensive plan would include salaries and working conditions, and look into the kind of teachers the
country needs. For example, in 2017, there were only 5 computer science teacher graduates, 15 engineering teachers and
no food tech teachers at all.”