Schools 'facing shortage of teachers after recruitment failure
Take-up of teacher training places falls short, it is claimed.
Schools could face a crisis in teacher numbers as the Government misses its minimum target for occupied teaching training places for the second year in a row, experts have warned.
Labour claim that schools will face a shortage of trainee teachers because of the failure of Government recruitment reforms.
The shadow education secretary Tristram Hunt said official figures showed 6,430 of 38,900 available places for teaching training were currently empty and that David Cameron was failing in his “basic responsibility” to provide good teachers.
That would mean the Department for Education’s has missed its own minimum target for the number of new teachers required by 2,000.
However a spokesman for the department said that it was “nonsense” to suggest there would be a shortage of teachers and said that 99% of post-graduate places had been filled.
This year Michael Gove, the education secretary, decided to switch almost half of the country's 25,000 training places into schools and away from universities.
However critics say that this system, known as “School Direct”, is failing to recruit the number of graduates needed and prospective students are “voting with their feet” and favouring the remaining university courses meaning that the government is failing to recruit in crucial subject areas.
Professor John Howson, the managing director of DataforEducation.info and a leading expert in the teaching labour market, said that the Government had failed to hit “most” of their schools direct targets with subjects that will be key to the economic recovery often most affected.
He said: “If you look at the school direct subject like physics – there were 318 school direct training places and they have filled 60 of them.
Read more... (Daily Telegraph - 21 December)