Casual Relief Teachers (CRT) are employed by schools to cover temporary teacher absences.
CRT can be both challenging and rewarding. Here is some useful information to help teachers navigate this path, links from the Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT), and one teacher’s story of working as a CRT.
Useful Tips and Advice
Write a CV, with particular reference to any CRT that you have successfully completed. Referees who can attest to your ability to ‘fit into’ different schools’ ethos, routines and learning style would be helpful.
Determine the catchment area of schools in which you prefer to work. Do your homework to ensure that your teaching style and preferred manner of working will be compatible with the schools. Many schools in the Independent sector have a particular faith base, which could impact on your decision. Other schools follow a particular educational philosophy, for example, International Baccalaureate programs. Others, such as Montessori and Steiner, may require CRTs to have experience and qualifications in that educational style. Select schools where you believe your expertise, experience and qualifications are a good match.
Phone those schools, and ask to speak to the person responsible for CRTs. This will vary in schools in the Independent sector e.g. the Daily Organiser, Deputy Principal, Head of Campus.
Most likely, the school will arrange an interview, when you should explain your flexibility and how/when you prefer to be contacted. Sometimes schools will have a need for CRTs for a block of time (e.g. a week to cover family leave or bereavement, or a term to replace staff on Long Service Leave) and at other times, it will be short-term, a day or two to cover illness. You should let the school know how flexible you are, and what forward planning you require to agree to both types of CRT work.
Email your CV to the schools. Follow this up with a phone call.
It is not unusual for successful CRTs to be appointed permanently in schools, once they have proven their ‘worth’ over time.