The TES is reporting that applications to train as a teacher in England have dropped by 9 per cent compared with this time last year.
Figures released today by university admissions organisation Ucas show that there were 119,170 applications for teacher training in England by 20 July this year, compared with 131,120 at the same time last year…
But they also reveal that the year-on-year gap has closed as recruitment continues – in May it was 13 per cent.
Ucas handles admissions for both university and school-led routes. There has been particular concern about the low recruitment rates on to School Direct, which last year only filled 61 per cent of its 15,254 allocated places.
This year, School Direct’s allocation rose by 15 per cent to 17,609 places. But today’s figures show that the number of School Direct places filled has only risen by 13 per cent compared with this time last year.
John Howson, a teacher workforce expert and honorary research fellow at the University of Oxford, said: “We are running out of time. We are unlikely to get back to where we were last year because there is not enough time left to recruit people…”
This appears to be yet more evidence that the recruitment challenge is very real, although these latest UCAS figures suggest things are perhaps not quite as bad as they seemed a couple of months ago.
The DfE is claiming there are 2 per more due to start postgraduate teacher training than this time last year, and that they are ahead of last year in ‘key subjects’ including English, maths, physics and chemistry.
If, by the time recruitment ends this year, there is still a significant shortfall compared with last year, how serious do you think that will be?
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