Schools to get some relief in the search for fill-in teachers

Australian startup ClassCover is eliminating the need for schools to phone around when looking for relief teachers.


Its booking platform connects teachers and schools, allowing administrators to see which relief teachers are available and when.


Since launching in Sydney in 2012 it’s grown to over 450 schools across Australia, and recently entered the New Zealand and Singapore markets.


Founded by Peter Carpenter and teacher Ben Grozier, the startup moves away from the industry standard transaction-based fees to a subscription-based model that charges based on the number of enrolments. The price of the average school subscription is about $600 per year.


“The general process for most schools is to pick up the phone and start making calls. Some schools will use an agency and pay a commission or price for it each time,” Carpenter says.


“ClassCover gives schools the control to pick and choose who they wish. They can view the availability of their own preapproved teachers and book them via a prioritised SMS process.


“It lets the technology do all the work.”


Teachers can sign up to the platform and connect with the schools they want for free. There’s also a LinkedIn-style premium membership which gives teachers access to accreditation courses they can complete on the platform.


“It gives them access to a more structured support platform where the key element is unlimited professional development,” Carpenter says.


“Teachers need to maintain their accreditation, so they can do that through a mix of online or blended learning that they can partake in.”


Carpenter says last year the startup raised a small amount of seed funding in order to customise the product for other verticals.


“We know it’s a problem that exists in multiple verticals,” he says.


“An opportunity rose in the middle of last year to customise the platform for other sectors, one being the justice side of things. Juvenile correctional facilities need casual workers, so we’re rolling out the platform to those facilities at the moment.”


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