Teacher workforce mobility policy

Version number 1.1 | Version effective 17 January 2020
Teacher workforce mobility policy


All state schools and permanent teachers.


To outline the Department of Education’s (the department’s) commitment to a range of practices that support a flexible, mobile teaching workforce across Queensland.

Policy statement

A mobile teaching workforce is vital to provide all Queensland schools with high quality, committed teachers delivering quality education to children across the state. The department is committed to a range of workforce mobility practices that support flexibility, innovation and continuous improvement, and a teaching community that is committed to lifelong learning and ongoing professional development.


A mobile teaching workforce is necessary to support:

  • access to a range of professional experiences and opportunities to develop teaching capabilities which meet the learning needs of students with diverse backgrounds and abilities
  • school renewal, continuous improvement and the sharing of innovative practices across schools within the organisation and teaching community
  • placement of quality teachers in all locations, including rural and remote and other high priority locations
  • generation of vacancies that enable the department to deliver on its commitment to teachers who are seeking to return after rural or remote service.

Activities that support workforce mobility include transfers, relieving placements, and internal teaching appointments, all of which rely upon transparent processes and a capable, quality teaching workforce to be effective.

When making a decision with respect to teacher workforce mobility, the decision maker will consider human rights.


The department will support school leaders and teachers to successfully carry out the following activities. 

School leaders

School leaders are expected to encourage the mobility of teachers across the system and actively participate in activities that support a mobile teaching workforce. This includes:

  • proactively promoting the benefits of rural and remote experience to teachers and encouraging all teachers to undertake a wide range of teaching experiences across rural, remote and complex locations for professional development purposes
  • discussing individual professional development opportunities with teachers regularly, including potential rural and remote service, or other arrangements that could potentially benefit the teacher and department (e.g. relieving placements, service in high priority locations) if there are genuine reasons that prevent them undertaking rural and remote service
  • ensuring transparency about the performance and capability of individual teachers when facilitating transfers, relieving placements, and other workforce decisions
  • providing constructive feedback to individual teachers regarding potential development needs through performance review processes and ongoing career discussions
  • balancing school autonomy with a commitment to the system by participating in the guaranteed transfer process and other activities that facilitate a mobile teaching workforce
  • considering human rights when reviewing and endorsing an application for transfer.


Teachers are expected to take ownership of their professional development and to consider suitable opportunities throughout their career to gain diverse professional experiences, expand the breadth of their capabilities and demonstrate a commitment to lifelong learning. This includes:

  • initiating professional and career development opportunities
  • working across rural, remote and complex locations during their employment with the department
  • maintaining professional currency and employability (including at least two subject areas for secondary teachers) and expected performance standards over the course of their career.

To meet staffing requirements or to address specific operational needs, the department may also require teachers to transfer in accordance with section 133 of the Public Service Act 2008 (Qld) and teacher transfer guidelines.





Other resources

Superseded versions

Previous seven years shown. Minor version updates not included.

1.0 Teacher workforce mobility

Review date

13 February 2024
Attribution CC BY