DfE says ‘rekindling teachers’ passion’ for their subjects could help retention crisis

Tes reports that helping teachers to increase their expertise in teaching their subject could help with retention problems, a Department for Education official said today.

Gareth Conyard, DfE deputy director of teacher workforce development, cited a study by the Wellcome Trust which found that science teachers who took part in subject-specific CPD courses were half as likely to leave teaching a year later, than those who did not.

“One of the inferences we can draw from that is engaging with your subject can rekindle your passion for it,” he told a conference in London.

The Wellcome Trust report also made a link between subject training and school standards, finding that schools that have the poorest academic or inspection results are the least likely to prioritise subject-specific professional development.

However, Mr Conyard indicated that the decision on whether to offer subject-specific CPD would be left to schools.

When asked if the DfE would act on the issue: “If somebody is a physics graduate, recently qualified, they may not feel they need the same subject support in the first few years as someone who did a different degree and is now teaching physics, so we want people to make decisions at a local level.”

The DfE is currently consulting on how to improve professional development for teachers and has asked whether there is a market for non-leadership national professional qualifications in subject expertise.

Read more DfE says ‘rekindling teachers’ passion’ for their subjects could help retention crisis

Would more CPD rekindle your passion? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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