The TES is reporting warnings that an overhaul of teacher training is fuelling a shortage of new maths and science teachers…
In a new report, Universities UK raises concerns about the impact of the government’s decision to give schools more say in the recruiting and training of staff. It says that if the pace of change continues, it could create problems in training enough teachers.
Since 2012/13, initial teacher training has undergone a radical shake-up, with an increasing number of training places going to the new School Direct programme, rather than universities.
Under School Direct, schools take the lead in taking on trainees. But this has led to “instability” for many universities, with the numbers of training places allocated directly to institutions falling by 23 per cent in three years, says Universities UK.
While School Direct has been more successful in recruiting trainee English and history teachers, it has been less successful for science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects, the report says.
“This has contributed to a shortfall in the number of trainee teachers recruited into several subject areas, such as mathematics and physics,” it says.
“There are concerns, therefore, that, as the government pursues its ambition for a school-led system, the pace of change could create teacher supply issues in the future if university-delivered training becomes unsustainable.”
Official figures show that School Direct managed to fill just two thirds of its allocated places in 2013/14, while universities filled over 90 per cent, the study found…
Universities UK are hardly an independent observer here, but are they none-the-less making valid points? Is School Direct fuelling a shortage of new maths and science teachers? And, if so, why are they struggling in these STEM subjects? Please give us your insights in the comments or via Twitter…
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