Schools open doors to ‘more unfilled teacher posts’

Leading specialist recruiters are reporting that schools are beginning the term with rising numbers of teaching vacancies – up a quarter on two years ago. Education recruiter Eteach reported seeing a rise of 15% over two years at the end of August.

SCHOOLS NorthEast’s own regional jobs portal, Jobs in Schools North East, has seen an increase of 63% over the past 18 months in the number of schools registering to advertise vacant positions.

However, the government has said that more teachers are entering the profession than those that leave; but in figures they published a few days ago it suggested that the target for recruiting trainee teachers for 2017 would be missed for a fifth year in a row.

Geoff Barton, Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) head, said: “Schools have moved heaven and Earth to put teachers in front of classes for the start of this academic year, and in many cases will be using stop-gap solutions to deliver courses.

“What we must have is a permanent fix. It is clear that we need a national strategy to address this issue as a matter of urgency, in which the government and the teaching profession work together to find solutions.

“We need to attract more people into the profession, and then we need to make sure that we keep them.”

He said head teachers knew the key ingredient to maintaining and raising standards was “a ready supply of teachers”.

“Instead, we have an ongoing recruitment crisis which means many have to use supply staff on a routine basis and non-specialist teachers for subjects like maths and physics.”

According to a spokesman at the Department for Education, they are “investing £1.3bn until 2020 to attract more people to become teachers.”

The DfE said: “These figures do not reflect the fact that the teacher vacancy rate in 2016 remained low – at 0.3%.

“The number of teachers entering our classrooms is outnumbering those who retire or leave, and there are now more teachers in our schools than ever before – 15,500 more since 2010.”

SCHOOLS NorthEast developed Jobs in Schools North East at the start of 2016, following a direct request from schools in the region.

“Our Partner Schools had identified that the majority of positions that they advertised were filled from within the region” said Lucy McMahon, Relationship Manager at SCHOOLS NorthEast. “Because of this they did not want to pay the high price tags of national recruitment companies and asked us to develop a regional solution that would help them identify local talent and fit within their budgets”.

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Original article published on BBC News:


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