Teacher workforce and careers

Publication Date



Teacher certification, Teacher supply and demand, Teacher effectiveness, Career paths, Professional development, Educational policy


In December 2022, federal, state and territory education ministers released a National Teacher Workforce Action Plan to improve teacher supply and retention in the profession. While recognising the important role that Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher (HALT) certification could play, the plan also recognised that the current approach to certification was cumbersome for teachers and called for it to be ‘streamlined’. At the request of the education ministers, the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) has produced a revised Framework for the Certification of HALT Teachers. Guided by the Framework, certifying authorities across state and territory school systems will be responsible for ‘less onerous, while being rigorous’ processes for assessing applications. This paper is based on a project called the Portfolio Project conducted by ACER between 2015 and 2018 to develop methods to reduce the application workload for teachers and assessors while increasing the validity and reliability of the certification process. These methods were trialed with positive results. Based on lessons learned during the Project, this paper suggests ways to strengthen the efficiency and credibility of the HALT certification process, while also making it a more satisfying and effective vehicle for teachers’ professional development.

Place of Publication

Camberwell, Australia


Australian Council for Educational Research