Teacher recruitment worries, but Northumberland fares well

Concerns have been raised nationally about the number of teaching vacancies, but the picture is looking rosier in Northumberland.

Thursday, 7th September 2017, 3:00 pm
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 11:13 am
The subjects which face the most difficulties in recruiting teachers.

There were 920 vacancies for full-time permanent teachers in state-funded schools in England last year, according to the latest Government data.

A further 3,280 full-time posts were being temporarily filled on a contract of at least one term but less than a year, the figures reveal.

But in Northumberland, the 2016 figures for local authority-maintained schools and academies at primary and secondary level show that there was just one full-time vacant post and nine full-time temporarily-filled posts.

Union leaders have blamed the high vacancies on an escalating teacher recruitment and retention crisis, fuelled by excessive workload and year-on-year cuts to teachers’ pay, but the figures show that the issue varies by region with the most challenging recruitment problems in London boroughs at both primary and secondary level.

A report from the Education Select Committee, published in February, says recruitment targets for teaching had been consistently missed and the teacher shortage is getting worse.

However, a Department for Education spokesman argued that there are now more teachers in our schools than ever before – 15,500 more since 2010.

He said: “We take teacher recruitment very seriously with a significant programme designed to encourage more good graduates to choose teaching as a career.”