For New Zealand teachers, it's that time of the year: job hunting season. From September to November, the number of primary and secondary teaching vacancies spikes dramatically, as principals seek to employ teachers for the next school year.
For student and beginning teachers, this can be fairly overwhelming - suddenly your inbox is filled with email alerts telling you all about all these amazing roles! A particular challenge can be deciphering some of the unfamiliar phrases and acronyms in these ads. Like all professions, the teaching professions has its own particular jargon, and if you haven't had much of an opportunity to be exposed to this jargon, it can be very confusing.
In this blog post we've collected 29 of the phrases and acronyms that are commonly used in teaching vacancy advertisements, but which student and beginning teachers might be unfamiliar with.
0.2, 0.4, 0.6, 0.8 See FTTE
Allowance There are several different paid allowances available to teachers in particular positions. If you see an acronym in an ad with "A" at the end, chances are they are referring to an allowance. Allowances commonly referred to in advertisements include MITA (Māori Immersion Teachers' Allowance), PTSA (Priority Teacher Supply Allowance), SDA (Special Duties Allowance), SIA (Staffing Incentive Allowance).
Assistant Teacher A teacher who has a classroom teaching position with no additional paid responsibilities. (See also Base/Basic Scale teacher and Scale A teacher).
Base/Basic Scale Teacher See Assistant Teacher and Scale A Teacher.
BYOD Bring your own device, a teaching model where students bring in their own electronic devices (such as laptops and tablets) for the purpose of learning. Find out more.
CIE Cambridge International Exams, a curriculum used by some schools in New Zealand. Find out more.
Collective Agreement A document that outlines the terms and conditions of employment (including pay rates) for teachers. There are separate primary, secondary and early childhood collective agreements. These are used by all state and state integrated primary and secondary schools. Some early childhood centres will also use this agreement, though most will use their own individual employment agreements.
Fixed-Term Position A position where a teacher is contracted to work for a certain length of time, for example one term. Most of the time fixed-term positions are one year or less, however, they can be extended. See also LTR. Find out more.
FTTE Full time teacher equivalent. A way of describing how many teaching hours a part time position will involve. For example, a 0.2 FTTE position means that the role will involve the equivalent of one day's teaching work a week. These hours could be spread over multiple days. Find out more.
HPE Health and Physical Education.
IB International Baccalaureate, a curriculum used by some schools in New Zealand. Find out more.
HOF/HOD/TIC/HOLA Head of Department/Head of Faculty/Teacher in Charge/Head of Learning Area.
LTR Long term relief position. See Fixed-Term Position.
MLE Modern learning environment. These are spaces for 21st century learning that "promote learning that is personalised, student-centred, engaging and connected to real problems and the real world" and are replacing traditional primary and secondary classrooms. Find out more.
MMA Middle Management Allowance. This is an allowance that may be paid to primary and secondary teachers with extra curriculum or pastoral management responsibilities, and is worth $1000 p/a on top of a base salary. Find out more.
Must be a NZ Registered Teacher Applicants must have provisional, subject to confirmation or full teacher registration, or be eligible for teacher registration in the case of student teachers. Find out more.
MU Management unit, allocated to primary and secondary teachers with extra middle and senior management responsibilities. Each unit is worth $4000 p/a on top of a base salary. Find out more.
PRT Provisionally registered teacher. See 'Must be a NZ Registered Teacher'.
PYP Primary years programme. Usually used in reference to the International Baccalaureate primary years programme. Find out more.
Regraded, no actual vacancy This term is sometimes used in secondary vacancy advertisements. According to the PPTA this term has no official status. "Its intent is to alert prospective applicants to the fact that there will be an internal applicant for the position. It should not deter prospective applicants from applying if they wish to."
RTLB Resource Teacher: Learning and Behaviour. RTLBs work with schools, teachers and Year 1 - 10 students with learning and behaviour difficulties. To be an RTLB, you must have full teacher registration. Find out more.
Scale A Teacher See Assistant Teacher and Base/Basic Scale Teacher.
Special Character School (also known as Designated Character School) A state or state-integrated school that receives government funding but has its own set of aims, purposes and objectives to reflect their own particular values. Examples of special character schools include Catholic schools, Anglican schools and Rudolf Steiner schools.
Tagged Position (also known as an s65 tagged position). This is a term most commonly used for some (not all) positions in Catholic schools. It means the teacher in the position must have a willingness and ability to participate in religious instruction appropriate to the special character of the school. There are a number of criteria a teacher must meet to teach in a tagged position. This is assessed by filling out an s65 form or 'S Form'. Find out more by reading the form.
Teacher-in-Training A teacher who is currently studying towards an ECE qualification.
U This term is used to describe the size of the school. The scale ranges from U1 (1-50 students) to U16 (2401+). Check the scale here.
Unqualified/Unregistered A teacher who does not have teacher registration. Unregistered teachers are able to teach at ECE centres, however, they are generally paid at a lower rate than trained teachers.
U2s Under 2 years olds (i.e. infants and toddlers).
Y Year (i.e. Y4 equals Year 4).
This isn't an exhaustive list by any means. If you're reading an ad and are unsure about a particular word, phrase or acronym, you can ask your associate teacher or lecturer, check out the school's website (recommended anyway), search online, get in touch with us at our Facebook page or comment below!