Frequently Asked Questions

Applicants

Can teachers without a teaching load during the assessment period still apply for certification?

No. If a teacher will not be teaching in the classroom during the assessment period, it will not be possible for an Assessor to undertake the required observations of practice.

Do teachers need to become a Highly Accomplished Teacher before they can become a Lead Teacher?

No.

If the principal won’t support an application, can a teacher still apply for certification?

Teachers can apply for certification without the support of their principal, but the principal will be required to act as a referee during the assessment process.

Do applicants need to attend an information workshop?

Certification is an intensive process for teachers and requires a substantial commitment to put together a portfolio of evidence.  Information workshops are designed to give a detailed understanding of the certification process and the work that is required to undergo assessment.

How much is the assessment fee?

Stage 1 – $850 / Stage 2 – $650

Fees are payable to the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) at the beginning of each stage.  Only those applicants who are successful at Stage 1 will progress to Stage 2.

Why is there a fee for assessment?

The assessment fee covers some of the costs of using trained assessors.

Will the assessment fee be returned if an applicant is unsuccessful?

No.  Assessment fees are paid as a contribution to the cost of the assessment process. The fee is not determined by the result of this process.

Applicants who are unsuccessful at either stage cannot claim back their assessment fee.

Can a school/employer pay for the assessment?

Schools/employers may pay the assessment fees but there is no onus on them to do so.

Who is the Certifying Authority?

The Queensland College of Teachers.

What evidence should an applicant provide?

Applicants must evidence how they meet each of the standards at the career level for which they are seeking certification (either Highly Accomplished Teacher or Lead Teacher). Each standard must be addressed by at least two pieces of evidence and each of the descriptors at the relevant career stage must be accounted for at least once.

Evidence can be from a previous role, but it must be from a genuine teaching role within the past five years and verifiable.

How should applicants present the evidence?

Refer to the HAT and LT submission process for 2020 which provides information on the acceptable formats for digital portfolios.

Who undertakes the assessment?

Queensland Catholic Education Commission (QCEC) assessors are a mix of Queensland Catholic school teachers, Catholic School Authority office-based staff and retired teachers.  Each has met and continues to meet the QCEC eligibility to be an assessor and has undertaken rigorous AITSL-approved training and is accredited as an assessor by AITSL.

What if the assessor(s) and applicant know each other or have previously worked together?

Applicants must declare this and any other conflicts of interest to QCT before the assessment begins.

Who provides the equipment for online meetings with Assessors?

It is expected that applicants will use equipment within their school or, if they choose, their own equipment.

Do assessors contact applicants’ students?

No. Assessors may speak to students within the context of observing classroom practice.

Who should be a referee?

The applicant’s principal will usually be a referee.  Others should be those who know the applicant’s work well and can communicate how they meet the standards and verify the evidence the applicant has provided against the standards/descriptors.

What format should referees use for the Referee Statements?

Referees should use the templates provided on this website. There are separate templates for Highly Accomplished Teacher and Lead Teacher referee statements.

Is there a required format or template for recording the two classroom observations which must be submitted at Stage 1?

No. The format currently used at the applicant’s school should be used. One observation must be undertaken by the principal or their nominated delegate and both observations must be from the past 12 months.

What are the role and responsibilities of the principal in the certification process?

Principals provide critical support to teachers undertaking Highly Accomplished or Lead Teacher certification.  They are involved in each stage of the process and perform activities at each assessment stage which are outlined on this website here. <link to School Leaders page>

Can principals delegate their roles and responsibilities in the certification process?

Principals may delegate their role in the assessment process to other members of the school leadership team who have sufficient knowledge of an applicant’s practice.  Delegates must be nominated by the principal using this form. <link to form>

Does the applicant nominate their referees?

Yes.  One referee must be the applicant’s current principal.

How many referees should an applicant nominate?

Applicants must nominate 3-5 referees.  One must be the applicant’s current principal.

Can applicants nominate referees they have worked with in previous roles?

Yes but one referee must be the applicant’s current principal.

What happens if applicants are not successful at Stage 1?

Applicants who are not successful at Stage 1 cannot progress to Stage 2.  Feedback on Stage 1 will be provided to these applicants.

If an applicant is unsuccessful at Stage 1 as a Lead Teacher can they continue to be assessed as a Highly Accomplished teacher?

No. Applicants’ portfolios can only be assessed against the standards for the career level for which they initially sought certification.

Can applicants defer?

Applicants may withdraw from the certification process once assessment has begun but they may not be able to claim back the assessment fee.

Can applicants who have passed Stage 1 defer Stage 2 until the next round of assessments?

No. If applicants choose not to progress to Stage 2 they will need to begin the certification process again from Stage 1 in a following round.

When are applicants appointed as Highly Accomplished or Lead Teachers?

Applicants are responsible for informing their school/employer of their successful certification as a Highly Accomplished Teacher or Lead Teacher.

When does a successful applicant’s salary reflect their certification?

If a successful applicant informs their school/employer within six months of being certified, their salary at the Highly Accomplished or Lead Teacher paypoint will be paid from the date of certification.  If the school/employer is not informed of certification for more than six months, the Highly Accomplished or Lead Teacher paypoint will be paid from the date the employer was informed of certification and evidence was provided.

What happens if an applicant changes jobs/sectors/employer during the certification process?

This may affect an applicant’s ability to continue to meet the eligibility criteria. Applicants should contact QCT to discuss their circumstances.

Will certification be recognised if an applicant changes schools/employers?

Catholic School Authorities in Queensland have agreed to recognise Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher certification.  Successful applicants will need to provide proof of their certification.  Non-Catholic schools in Queensland and all interstate schools will have their own arrangements. Certified teachers should check directly with these schools.

School Leaders

Do school leaders need to attend an information workshop?

Certification is an intensive process for teachers and requires a substantial commitment to put together a portfolio of evidence.  Information workshops are designed to give a detailed understanding of the certification process and the work that is required to undergo assessment. It is recommended that school leaders attend an information workshop.

Who is the Certifying Authority?

The Queensland College of Teachers.

Can a school/employer pay for the assessment?

Schools/employers may pay the assessment fees but there is no onus on them to do so.

Who undertakes the assessment?

Queensland Catholic Education Commission (QCEC) assessors are a mix of Queensland Catholic school teachers, Catholic School Authority office-based staff and retired teachers.  Each has met and continues to meet the QCEC eligibility to be an assessor and has undertaken rigorous AITSL-approved training and is accredited as an assessor by AITSL.

Do assessors contact applicants’ students?

No. Assessors may speak to students within the context of observing classroom practice.

Who should be a referee?

The applicant’s principal will usually be a referee.  Others should be those who know the applicant’s work well and can communicate how they meet the standards and verify the evidence the applicant has provided against the standards/descriptors.

Is there a required format or template for recording the two classroom observations which must be submitted at Stage 1?

No. The format currently used at the applicant’s school should be used. One observation must be undertaken by the principal or their nominated delegate and both observations must be from the past 12 months.   

Is there a required format or template for recording the two classroom observations which must be submitted at Stage 1?

No. The format currently used at the applicant’s school should be used. One observation must be undertaken by the principal or their nominated delegate and both observations must be from the past 12 months.   

What are the role and responsibilities of the principal in the certification process?

Principals provide critical support to teachers undertaking Highly Accomplished or Lead Teacher certification.  They are involved in each stage of the process and perform activities at each assessment stage which are outlined on this website here

Can principals delegate their roles and responsibilities in the certification process?

Principals may delegate their role in the assessment process to other members of the school leadership team who have sufficient knowledge of an applicant’s practice.  Delegates must be nominated by the principal using this form. 

Does the applicant nominate their referees?

Yes.  One referee must be the applicant’s current principal.

How many referees should an applicant nominate?

Applicants must nominate 3-5 referees.  One must be the applicant’s current principal.

Can applicants nominate referees they have worked with in previous roles?

Yes, but one referee must be the applicant’s current principal.

When are applicants appointed as Highly Accomplished or Lead Teachers?

Applicants are responsible for informing their school/employer of their successful certification as a Highly Accomplished Teacher or Lead Teacher.

When does a successful applicant’s salary reflect their certification?

If a successful applicant informs their school/employer within six months of being certified, their salary at the Highly Accomplished or Lead Teacher paypoint will be paid from the date of certification.  If the school/employer is not informed of certification for more than six months, the Highly Accomplished or Lead Teacher paypoint will be paid from the date the employer was informed of certification and evidence was provided.

Will certification be recognised if an applicant changes schools/employers?

Catholic School Authorities in Queensland have agreed to recognise Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher certification.  Successful applicants will need to provide proof of their certification.  Non-Catholic schools in Queensland and all interstate schools will have their own arrangements. Certified teachers should check directly with these schools.

Referees

Do referees need to attend an information workshop?

Certification is an intensive process for teachers and requires a substantial commitment to put together a portfolio of evidence.  Information workshops are designed to give a detailed understanding of the certification process and the work that is required to undergo assessment. It is recommended that referees attend an information workshop

Who is the Certifying Authority?

The Queensland College of Teachers.

Who undertakes the assessment?

Queensland Catholic Education Commission (QCEC) assessors are a mix of Queensland Catholic school teachers, Catholic School Authority office-based staff and retired teachers.  Each has met and continues to meet the QCEC eligibility to be an assessor and has undertaken rigorous AITSL-approved training and is accredited as an assessor by AITSL.

Do Assessors contact applicants’ students?

No. Assessors may speak to students within the context of observing classroom practice.

Who should be a referee?

The applicant’s principal will usually be a referee.  Others should be those who know the applicant’s work well and can communicate how they meet the standards and verify the evidence the applicant has provided against the standards/descriptors.

Does the applicant nominate their referees?

Yes.  One referee must be the applicant’s current principal.

What format should referees use for the Referee Statements?

Referees should use the templates provided on this website. There are separate templates for Highly Accomplished Teacher and Lead Teacher referee statements.

How many referees should an applicant nominate?

Applicants must nominate 3-5 referees.  One must be the applicant’s current principal.

Can applicants nominate referees they have worked with in previous roles?

Yes but one referee must be the applicant’s current principal.

When are applicants appointed as Highly Accomplished or Lead Teachers?

Applicants are responsible for informing their school/employer of their successful certification as a Highly Accomplished Teacher or Lead Teacher.

Will certification be recognised if an applicant changes schools/employers?

Catholic School Authorities in Queensland have agreed to recognise Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher certification.  Successful applicants will need to provide proof of their certification.  Non-Catholic schools in Queensland and all interstate schools will have their own arrangements. Certified teachers should check directly with these schools.

Assessors

Do assessors need to attend an information workshop?

Certification is an intensive process for teachers and requires a substantial commitment to put together a portfolio of evidence.  Information workshops are designed to give a detailed understanding of the certification process and the work that is required to undergo assessment. Assessors may wish to support the process by attending information workshops.

Who is the Certifying Authority?

The Queensland College of Teachers.

Who undertakes the assessment?

Queensland Catholic Education Commission (QCEC) assessors are a mix of Queensland Catholic school teachers, Catholic School Authority office-based staff and retired teachers.  Each has met and continues to meet the QCEC eligibility to be an assessor and has undertaken rigorous AITSL-approved training and is accredited as an assessor by AITSL.

What if the Assessor(s) and applicant know each other or have previously worked together?

Applicants must declare this and any other conflicts of interest to QCT before the assessment begins.

Who provides the equipment for online meetings with Assessors?

It is expected that applicants will use equipment within their school or, if they choose, their own equipment.

How many practice/classroom sessions will be assessed in Stage 2?

At least two 30-minute sessions will be assessed.  Assessors will discuss with applicants if additional sessions are required.

Do Assessors contact applicants’ students?

No. Assessors may speak to students within the context of observing classroom practice.

Who should be a referee?

The applicant’s principal will usually be a referee.  Others should be those who know the applicant’s work well and can communicate how they meet the standards and verify the evidence the applicant has provided against the standards/descriptors.

When are applicants appointed as Highly Accomplished or Lead Teachers?

Applicants are responsible for informing their school/employer of their successful certification as a Highly Accomplished Teacher or Lead Teacher.

Will certification be recognised if an applicant changes schools/employers?

Catholic School Authorities in Queensland have agreed to recognise Highly Accomplished and Lead Teacher certification.  Successful applicants will need to provide proof of their certification.  Non-Catholic schools in Queensland and all interstate schools will have their own arrangements. Certified teachers should check directly with these schools.