ONLY three Tasmanian teachers have started a costly and time-consuming process to achieve the newly introduced higher classifications of ``highly accomplished'' or ``lead'' teacher.
Since the program opened in late June, two public and one private school teachers have lodged an expression of interest in undergoing the lengthy formal application process, which carries a $1600 upfront fee.
Teachers Registration Board chief executive officer Kerrie Moss was pleased with the initial level of interest.
``This is a brand-new process in Tasmania,'' Ms Moss said.
``A lot of people don't really know a lot about it.''
Up until now there were only two formal classifications - graduate and proficient.
Teachers who achieve the new higher levels of professional recognition are not guaranteed an increase in salary from their employers.
Australian Education Union Tasmanian president Terry Polglase said teachers would question the point of going through the onerous application process while the benefits remained unclear.
``I think at the moment we're in a state of flux as to what it means for teachers,'' Mr Polglase said.
He said originally highly accomplished teachers would have won an $8000 bonus and lead teachers would have been entitled to an extra $10,000 but funding for that had been swallowed up by the extra funding promised as part of the Gonski reforms, creating uncertainty. Guidelines published by the Teachers Registration Board defines highly accomplished teachers as highly effective, skilled classroom practitioners who routinely work independently and collaboratively to improve their own practice and the practice of colleagues.
Lead teachers are described as employees ``recognised and respected by colleagues, parents/carers and the community''.