Government misses teacher recruitment target for fifth consecutive year – by a lot

The government has missed the teacher recruitment target for the fifth consecutive year – this time by a significant amount.

The latest figures from the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) show that acceptances to teacher training courses for this year have dropped by seven per cent.

Only 26,000 individuals were accepted on to teacher training courses for 2016-2017, meaning that government targets for teacher recruitment in England have now been missed for five consecutive years.

Commenting on the drop in acceptances to teacher training places, Baljinder Kuller, who has over 15 years’ experience in teacher recruitment, and is now Managing Director of online supply teacher portal, The Supply register, said:

“The current UK teacher recruitment crisis is now reaching a critical level. As it stands, because of the extremely high turnover in the profession, schools in England need to recruit about 30,000 new teachers every year to stand still.”

“Because of the challenges that the education sector is currently facing in terms of retention, it is crucial that we pipeline future talent or face the very real risk of being unable to offer pupils the education they are entitled to and deserve.”

“Schools are running out of options. At this year’s annual conference of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), the idea was floated that schools could close early two days a week to help manage resources – this is obviously not ideal.”

“Until we fix our talent pipelines, government, trade bodies, multi-trust academies and individual schools must work together to ensure that the valuable teaching talent, not least supply, is not lost in the face of excessive workloads and falling take-home pay due to growing recruitment agency fees.”

“At a time when pupil numbers in England are predicted to rise by eight per cent over the next five years while budgets are simultaneously cut, it is now more important than ever that we support our existing teachers and offer them a fair deal in terms of remuneration.”

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