School Direct to train more teachers than university PGCEs from 2015

After the speculation we reported from Warwick Mansell yesterday, the TES is now confirming that the number of training places on the government’s School Direct scheme will overtake university PGCE places for the first time next year…

Figures released by the government show that there will be 17,609 places for School Direct trainees in 2015 and 15,490 higher education postgraduate places. This year there were 15,254 School Direct places and 16,342 higher education postgraduate places.

The total number of teacher training places has risen from 41,549 in 2014 to 43,516 in 2015.

Under School Direct, schools recruit trainees directly and link up with universities to provide out-of-classroom training. Trainees have an “expectation of employment” at their school at the end of their training.

But critics are concerned that the shift to School Direct may destabilise the teacher training system because universities cannot guarantee student numbers – and so funding – year on year.

On higher education routes, trainees are recruited by universities and undertake placements in schools. This makes universities less vulnerable to fluctuations in individual schools’ requirements for trainee teachers…

Dr Mary Bousted, general secretary at the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, said: “The government’s continuing acceleration towards school-based teacher training shows a wilful disregard for the growing teacher shortage crisis and evidence about what kind of teacher training works best…”

A spokesman for the Department for Education said: “The School Direct programme is a key part of our plan for education. It is proving hugely popular with schools and teachers with record numbers of requests – more than 23,000 – up by a third in one year…

More at: School Direct to train more teachers than university PGCEs from 2015


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Categories: Teaching and Training.


  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Schools Direct is untried and untested to a large extent; it may be great but the govt is taking a massive gamble with this

  2. TW

    Universities are being denied the funding for training teachers so schools are forced into taking the output of School Direct, the quality of which is variable.  The more training that is allocated to schools the less schools will be able to cope.

    The government abolished the duty to secure sufficient initial teacher training places that had been the responsibility of the Training and Development Agency.  School Direct has made the supply of new recruits haphazard.  This has helped create current recruiting problems.

  3. edujdw

    .Itsdihere TeachSchCouncil only because the allocations force more into School Direct over Uni routes starved of places

  4. edujdw

    .Itsdihere TeachSchCouncil how are you defining ‘successful’ given the massive under recruitment onto school direct?

  5. edujdw

    Itsdihere TeachSchCouncil which is exactly what it was before school direct, all that’s changed is the allocations go to schools… 1/2

  6. edujdw

    Itsdihere TeachSchCouncil creating extra work for schools. a perfectly good system has been wrecked for ideological reasons.

  7. Itsdihere

    edujdw TeachSchCouncil Trainees get far more connection with great practice in the classroom now than they ever did.

  8. edujdw

    Itsdihere TeachSchCouncil Sad. At Sussex schools drive our PGCE and the time spent in school by all routes except SD Salaried is same

  9. Itsdihere

    edujdw TeachSchCouncil Assessed placements same. EPS sessions and placements to enhance experience all led by outstanding practitioners.

  10. Itsdihere

    edujdw TeachSchCouncil My son just gone through SD and had fantastic experience. I’m an advocate unless proved otherwise.

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