Department of Education

Western Australian Curriculum Support

Implementation of the Western Australian Curriculum
Implementation of the Western Australian Curriculum
The Western Australian Curriculum sets out the core knowledge, understanding, skills and general capabilities important for all Western Australian students.

Western Australian Curriculum Support

Expressions of interest for 2017 Aboriginal languages teacher training

18 October 2016
In order to meet the continued demand for Aboriginal languages teachers, the Department provides a training course for Aboriginal staff of the Department who are speakers of an Aboriginal language.

Information and Application 2017

This is an in-school traineeship and the course incorporates language revival/maintenance strategies, language teaching methodology and current resources for the teaching of Aboriginal languages.

Course Objectives

At the completion of the training, teachers will have developed a high degree of skill and expertise in teaching to enable them to:

  • plan a language program for teaching across Years K-10 using a range of listening, speaking, viewing, reading and writing tasks to monitor and assess students learning;
  • create oral, visual and written resources in their own language using a range of technology; and
  • teach their language across year levels in a school.

Eligibility and application process

Aboriginal staff or Aboriginal community members with an acceptable level of oral Aboriginal language competence who want to train as an Aboriginal language teacher are eligible to apply.

  1. Application
    Interested applicants will need to:
    • return the completed application form with details about the language and their language knowledge and use;
    • identify a minimum of three language speakers who they can work with as language mentors; and
    • identify a local or nearby school where work shadowing might be possible.
  2. Oral Proficiency
    After applications have been received, information will be sent to applicants regarding an oral proficiency exercise.  The language proficiency exercise will be completed with an Elder or other language speaker to assess the applicants language competency level, to determine if they will be offered a place in the current intake. For example applicants may be asked to:
    • describe a scene or picture from the local environment using as much language as possible;
    • listen to a short audio recording in language and then retell the recording using as much language as possible;
    • listen to a short audio recording in language and retell the information in English; or
    • respond to questions about a familiar topic in language.
  3. School placement
    With assistance of Department staff, applicants identify a school where they can undertake the two year in-school traineeship as an Aboriginal Languages Trainee Teacher.  The Principal’s agreement and a class or classes must be identified as trainees are required to teach a minimum of one language class per week for the duration of the training.
  4. Notification
    Applicants will be notified via email of the outcome of their application.  


The Department will meet all costs for public schools, including accommodation, travel and teacher relief for the block release.  Schools will need to organise, book and pay for any required travel.  Teacher relief will be reimbursed through a Funds Transfer following the block release.

School Requirements

This course represents a significant investment in training and time.  Selected participants are expected to complete the course and then teach the language as part of the school’s language program.  Schools are expected to:

  • support the trainees during their training – identify year levels/classes for language teaching, provide funds for materials;
  • timetable regular planning and teaching time;
  • identify a suitable mentor/line manager to regularly monitor trainees’ progress and provide support; and
  • plan for systematic implementation of an Aboriginal language as part of the school curriculum.

Course information and requirements

The course is coordinated and presented by Aboriginal languages consultants.

  • This is a three year course – two years in-school traineeship, which includes attending five block releases and a third probationary teaching year.
  • Applicants must teach at least one language class every week for the duration of the training as this is a practical course and trainees are assessed on their skills in planning and teaching and their language proficiency and use.
  • Block releases – total 24 days.  One block release of four days and four block releases of five days, some held during the term and some in school holidays.  These are held in various locations across the state depending on the availability of venues and cost. Block releases are intensive residential training.  Trainees must attend all block releases, as each block builds on the skills acquired in the previous block.
  • After block releases, trainees return to schools to teach language class/es, applying skills and using materials developed at block release.  This practical application forms the basis of assignment requirements.
  • Assignments must be completed during the term and submitted at the beginning of each block release.
  • Trainees need to identify a language speaker/s who they can regularly work with to build oral and written language skills and a school mentor to provide regular support and feedback.

Quality Assurance

Course presenters conduct regular in-school monitoring and assessment of trainees’ planning and teaching development using the Aboriginal Languages Teachers Training (ALTT) rubric.

  • ALTT rubric is used as a:
    • basis for self-reflection and monitoring progress;
    • part of progressive appraisals by Department Aboriginal languages consultants; and
    • part of the appraisal process by the line manager/class teacher in the second year of training.
  • In-class observation and appraisal of trainees’ progress occurs 2 - 3 times in the first year of training, and 2 - 4 times in the second year of training and during the probationary year.  During these periods, planning and teaching progress is monitored, team teaching occurs as required, linguistic support for language development is provided and extension activities are offered.  Oral and written feedback is given to the trainee and line manager.
  • Trainees will also meet with course presenters to discuss progress, strengths and weaknesses, and focus areas during block release 3 and 4.  Assignment feedback, rubric and appraisal notes are used during this meeting

Registering as an Aboriginal Languages Teacher

Progression to language teaching occurs when the required levels of competency are attained at the end of the two year traineeship.  These competencies need to be demonstrated in:

  • planning
  • resource development
  • language proficiency
  • teaching (includes classroom management)

Trainees who do not reach the required level of competency can negotiate additional time to continue developing their skills.

Following graduation, the school will apply to the Teacher Registration Board of Western Australia for Limited Registration to Teach (LRT).  Appointment can then be made as an Aboriginal language teacher at a school.

Once appointed, Aboriginal language teachers LRT will be paid under the School Education Act Employees’ (Teachers and Administrators) General Agreement 2011 on Level 1.6 (Table 1).  Aboriginal language teachers work as a probationary teacher for one year.

Support visits and progressive appraisals occur during the final year.

2017-2018 Intake 16 Block Release Dates
Stage Block release dates Venue Travel dates
Prep Monday 20 – Thursday 23 February 2017 Perth Sunday 10 February
Thursday 23/Friday 24
1 Monday 17 – Friday 21 April 2017
Week 2 school holidays
TBC Sunday 16 April
Friday 21/Saturday 22
2 Monday 3 – Friday 7 July 2017
Week 1 school holidays
3 Early Term 1, 2018 TBC TBC
4 October school holidays 2018 TBC TBC

Expressions of Interest

Applicants should forward their completed Expression of Interest forms to Coleen Sherratt, Senior Consultant Aboriginal Languages (address details below) or email it to

Applications close on 25 November 2016.

For further information, please contact
Coleen Sherratt
Senior Consultant Aboriginal Languages
Statewide Services Centre
33 Giles Avenue
PADBURY   WA   6025

Telephone: 9402 6261
Mobile: 0437 412 479

Expressions of interest for 2017 Aboriginal languages teacher training

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