Reality Check: Is the government missing teacher targets?

The claim: The government is missing its teacher recruitment targets. The BBC Reality Check verdict: That’s right. Government figures show that’s been the case for the past 5 years. 

Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that the government was missing its targets on teacher recruitment.

Her comments came as the regulator, Ofsted, warned of a hardcore of underachieving schools that were struggling to recruit teachers.

Looking at the figures from the Department for Education’s trainee number census, that has certainly been the case for the past five years, although the 2017-18 figures are partly based on forecasts.

The House of Commons Library says that by this measure overall teacher recruitment was above target in each year from 2006-07 to 2011-12 and has been below target in each year since.

When you break that down into primary and secondary school teachers, the government has met or very nearly met its primary school target in four of the past five years, with almost all of the shortfall coming from secondary school teacher trainees.

The only subjects in which targets are being met this year are history and physical education, with the biggest shortfall coming in recruiting design and technology teachers.

Read more findings  Reality Check: Is the government missing teacher targets?

Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin 

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