The number of teachers in a year who move to another state-funded school is estimated to have nearly doubled between 2011 and 2015 (from 10,400 to 18,200 entrants to primary schools and from 8,300 to 16,500 entrants to secondary schools).
Further research is needed to understand the drivers of this change, and to what extent it reflects wider job mobility in the economy.
Teacher mobility poses a range of challenging questions relevant to different roles:
- Are ITT institutions preparing NQTs sufficiently for the demands and challenges of their first year in the job? Evidence from surveys of Newly Qualified Teachers has for some time highlighted NQTs’ desire for improved training on supporting pupils with behavioural needs and SEND. Year-on-year, in practice, I have found that many NQTs still express these same frustrations about their ITT.
- Once in post, are NQTs given a personalised induction? Do mentors - usually senior staff with multiple responsibilities - have the capacity in terms of time, training and resources to enable them to effectively support their NQT? Undoubtedly, there is certainly pressure on the mentor, induction leader and the NQT themselves to ensure their practice is of a high standard from day one.
- Are schools developing in-house leadership talent through an effective coaching and mentoring scheme? Excellent practitioners need to feel challenged by new responsibilities and given appropriate scope to develop their leadership potential through support by other experienced educational professionals. I have found holding informal one-to-one dialogues with teachers once a term useful in creating a forum to check-in and discuss generally how things are going; and powerful in terms of building a genuine relationship with each individual underpinned by the message that the school values their personal development and career goals.
Teacher appraisal has seen significant changes in recent years, and investing time in creating a robust appraisal system is of course a vital component of capacity building.
There truly is no greater resource in schools than our teachers. High quality CPD is essential to develop the workforce and retain staff. Our School Improvement experts can support your school in a bespoke manner to develop outstanding teachers and leaders, and to devise processes to recruit the highest calibre candidates. We offer a range of services such as support with coaching and mentoring, and Teaching and Learning reviews.
Read the full report on Schools workforce in England 2010 to 2015: trends and geographical comparisons.
Authored by Fay Gingell.