Positive reaction to QTS and induction reforms

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The induction period for new teachers is to be extended to two years as part of a number of measures aimed at supporting teacher recruitment and retention.

The government has published the outcomes of its consultation on proposals to strengthen qualified teacher status (QTS) and improve teachers’ career progression.

The Department for Education’s (DfE) plans include introducing an Early Career Framework (ECF) for the induction period to “ensure teachers have more support in this crucial phase of their careers and schools have more guidance about what they should be offering their new teachers”.

The ECF will “build on and complement initial teacher training (ITT)” and the DfE has convened an expert group to develop the ECF and advise on how schools should be supported to deliver CPD against its provisions.

Plans for how the new two-year statutory induction period will work are still to be developed, but the DfE’s consultation response hinted that extending the reduced NQT timetable into the second year was probable. It said: “We agree that if a two-year induction is to be viable, new teachers need to have the appropriate support and development opportunities, and sufficient time is a crucial element.”

It added: “This extension will not impact on pay; salaries post-ITT will still be on the qualified teacher pay scale, and teachers in their second year will have the same opportunity to advance through pay scales that they currently have.”

However, despite these plans, the awarding of QTS will still take place after ITT. The DfE said it “was attracted to” the consultation responses that suggested introducing an “Endorsed QTS” to mark the end of the two-year period.

Other proposals for NQT induction that the DfE intends to take forward include:

  • Giving schools access to high-quality training for NQT mentors, linking this to the ECF.
  • A review of the ITT mentor standards to ensure they are applicable for NQT mentors as well.
  • Amending the statutory induction guidance to create a new role of mentor in addition to the induction tutor.

In terms of career progress, the DfE said that the consultation showed “clear support” for specialist qualifications, including subject specialisms. It now plans to support the development of such qualifications.

It is also to investigate “the feasibility and desirability of developing a badging scheme or framework for CPD provision”. An expert group is also to be set-up to “explore options for how to improve awareness of the Standard for Teachers’ Professional Development, which was launched by the DfE in 2016 and which the consultation response said should be “at the heart” of proposals to improve access to high-quality CPD.

The response also detailed plans for introducing more flexible working practices that will put the profession on a par with other industries, as well as a £5 million fund to help experienced teachers take a sabbatical.

It states: “(The sabbaticals) will start in September 2019 for a pilot cohort who have been in the profession for at least 10 years.”

Reaction

Damian Hinds, education secretary: “We will take an unflinching look at the things that discourage people from going into teaching or make them consider leaving … and we will also look at how we support teachers to get better at what they do and hone their expertise and career progression. I want teachers to be able to develop and progress through clearer career pathways, including for those who want to stay in the classroom … and I want schools to be attractive 21st century workplaces.”

Association of School and College Leaders: “We are losing far too many teachers from the profession, particularly early in their careers, and we welcome (these) proposals as a step forward in addressing that problem.

“Providing new teachers with more support to develop their classroom practice and confidence will be good for them and good for the young people they teach. It makes the profession a more attractive career for graduates and will help improve retention. We welcome also the proposals to provide teachers with more opportunities for progression later in their careers, and the plan to pilot sabbaticals for established teachers.

“However, it is vital these proposals are properly funded by the government and that they do not end up becoming yet another additional unfunded cost on schools. There are several cost implications, including development and implementation of the enhanced professional development offer, resources and materials, and ensuring that schools are able to provide the release time for these programmes.”

National Association for School-Based Teacher Trainers: “We are thrilled to note that QTS will remain where it is, as the end of the ITT year, and it is the induction period which will be extended to include a greater entitlement to professional development and support.

“We are fully supportive of the development of the Early Career Framework for the induction period and look forward to working closely with the expert team to help shape this. We are also pleased to note that the DfE is ‘attracted’ to our suggested alternative to QTS(P) and QTS. We advocated strongly for QTS and Endorsed QTS and this has been recognised in the consultation response.

“However, the issue of funding remains unanswered. We must not lose sight of the fact that for these proposals to be successful, they must be properly funded and fully resourced.”

National Education Union: “We welcome the secretary of state’s commitment to supporting our newest teachers, through focused training and mentoring. His guarantee of the needed funding to deliver this additional work in schools recognises that recruitment and retention of teachers is a vital investment for this government, particularly in light of the teacher supply crisis. Sabbaticals are a good route of professional development for some but it mustn’t divert attention away from the need for a career-long programme of training for all.”

  • Strengthening Qualified Teacher Status and improving career progression for teachers: Government response, DfE, May 2018: http://bit.ly/2zja6F6


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Hello I am hoping that you can help me I have my PCEDT In teaching I just need my number how both I get it and will I have to pay for it.

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