Revisiting the schoolhouse: A literature review on staffing rural, remote and isolated schools in Australia 2004-2016

Natalie Downes, Philip Roberts

Abstract


The staffing of rural, remote and isolated schools remains a significant issue of concern in Australian education.  In this paper we provide a comprehensive account of the Australian research related to the staffing of rural schools post 2004.  The review identifies the overarching themes of the opportunities and challenges of staffing rural schools, pre-service teacher preparation, and leadership. Within these there are numerous sub categories such as the policy setting, incentives, understanding place, mentoring, professional development, and teacher education.  Overall the review identifies that the issues explored in the research literature between 2004 and 2016 are similar in character to those examined prior to 2004.  As such we raise the question of, if we have such a well-developed knowledge of matters related to rural school staffing, why does it remain an ongoing issue? While this review does not seek to answer this question, it provides an opening for discussion by identifying and describing the research on issues, and approaches, in the staffing of rural, remote, and isolated schools to date.


Keywords


teacher attraction and retention; rural and remote school staffing; rural school leadership; rural teacher preparation

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References


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