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Six questions to help you choose the right location for your next teaching job

 
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​Ask a teacher about their time in a regional, rural or remote school and they’ll tell you it was one of the best parts of their career. Between opportunities to develop professional skills, the incomparable personal growth, the amazing people and lifetime friendships, it’s an unforgettable experience.

​​But Queensland is a big state, with around 60% of our schools outside metropolitan areas. So how do you choose the right rural or remote location to flex your teaching muscles? Here are 6 questions to reflect on when considering your options.

​​1. What kind of activities would I like to do in my down-time?

​Reflect on your ideal lifestyle to help you find your perfect location match.

​​If you’re a nature lover who can’t wait to get out and enjoy a weekend adventure in the sunshine, perhaps the Far North Queensland region or North Queensland region could be for you. Based up north you’ll have world heritage rainforest and reef, savannah lands, islands, waterfalls, beaches, and volcanoes right on your doorstep.

​​If you get a thrill from being involved in community life, maybe you’d like to find a place with local events and festivals so you can get to know your neighbours. Say you head to the Darling Downs South West region, you could be right in the action to enjoy Toowoomba’s famous Carnival of Flowers, try your luck at watermelon-skin skiing (yep, it’s a thing!) at Chinchilla’s Melon Festival, or get your smashed avo fix at the annual Blackbutt Avocado Festival.

​​Explore the regions and discover the things you could do:

​​2. Would I like to teach in an Indigenous community?

​​Working in a remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community can be incredibly rewarding both professionally and personally. You’ll form deep connections with people in the community of all ages. Plus, you’ll gain an invaluable insight to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, traditions, knowledge, language and perspectives which will enrich your teaching practice going forward.

​We’ll support you with a comprehensive induction program to help you prepare, as well as a professional development in cultural awareness and second language pedagogy.

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Teaching in Doomadgee

Find out about Belinda's experience as a prep teacher at Doomadgee State School where she works in one of Queensland's remote schools.

3. What will my family need? Can I take a friend?

Will you have a partner or children in tow on your adventure? You could be eligible for relocation assistance and support to help you pack up and move.

If your partner will be looking for work, think about which regions might provide employment opportunities for them too. As an added bonus, you might even find housing options are more affordable once you get outside metropolitan areas.

If you’ve got kids, there are plenty of family-friendly locations across the state that would offer your little ones a carefree and fun childhood. Picture riding bikes together on the weekend, exploring the local natural wonders, making friends that become family—a focus on the things that matter.

Alternatively, chat to a teaching friend about taking an adventure together.

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A great place to raise a family: Teaching in Emerald

Queensland's many regional centres offer a safe, family friendly environment where teachers and their families are embraced in community life. When Monique moved to central Queensland for a short term teaching contract 14 years ago, she wasn't expecting to find a permanent home for her family.

4. What are the financial incentives?

Teaching in some locations may mean that you are eligible for financial incentives on top of your base salary.

Subsidised teacher accommodation may also available in selected locations and may save you money. The availability and cost of this varies depending on the location so if this is an important consideration for you, make sure you discuss this with the principal or recruiter in the location you’re considering moving to.

Use our rural and remote incentives calculator to discover some of the financial benefits you could receive.

Rural and remote incentives calculator

5. Can I try before I commit?

If you’re still at university, head rural or remote for one of your professional experience placements. It’s the perfect way to dip your toe in the water and discover what teaching outside of metro areas could be like for you as a teacher and in your life.

Our Beyond the Range Professional Experience grant is open each semester to preservice teachers. You could be eligible for up to $5,000 to assist with travel and accommodation expenses for placements in priority communities in Central Queensland, Darling Downs South West, North Queensland or Far North Queensland.

6. Where can I go to find out more?

There’s no better way to find out what teaching in a rural, regional or remote community is really like than talking to someone who has been there and done that.

Our biannual career fairs are a fantastic opportunity for you to connect with school leaders and teachers who live in communities across Queensland. Come along and find out from them what it’s like to teach and live in those communities, what the moving and settling in process was like for them and any other information you want to know. Our regional HR staff will be able to talk to you about where the jobs are across Queensland to find the best fit for you.

If you can’t make it to a career fair, our Teach Queensland Ambassadors attend and host career events across Queensland, interstate and online throughout the year. Check out our events calendar to find upcoming events.

Our regional recruiters welcome contact from you throughout the year and are happy to chat to you about what you’re looking for and where you’d like to teach. Visit our Contact us page for their details.

Attendee testimonial

Sam is a first-year preservice teacher who attended one of our career fairs. Hear about his experience at the career fair.

Wherever you end up, we hope you’ll look back on your rural or remote teaching adventure with fondness and gratitude. And who knows—it might be just the taste you need to make the switch for good! 

Got any other tips or a story to share about your rural or remote teaching journey? Email us at teachqld@qed.qld.gov.au.

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Last updated 02 December 2019