Teachers: Retirement

Children, Schools and Families written question – answered on 9th December 2008.

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Photo of Michael Gove Michael Gove Shadow Secretary of State (Children, Schools and Families)

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many teachers in the maintained sector will reach retirement age in each of the next five years.

Photo of Jim Knight Jim Knight Minister of State (Schools and Learners), Department for Children, Schools and Families, Minister of State (Department for Children, Schools and Families) (Schools and Learners)

Under the Teachers' Pensions Scheme (TPS) regulations there is no fixed retirement age. There is a normal pension age of 60, or 65 for new entrants from 1 January 2007, but teachers may retire with employer agreement from age 50 under the premature retirement arrangements, 55 under the actuarially reduced pension arrangements and from age 60 or 65 under normal age retirement. Teachers can continue to contribute to the TPS until age 75.

The following table provides an estimate of the number of full-time qualified regular teachers in service in England in 2007, broken down by age from 55, (i.e. five years before the normal pension age of 60). This is the latest information available.

Full-time regular qualified teachers broken down by age. Coverage: England—2007, provisional
Age Number
Under 55 321,200
56 11,500
57 10,300
58 9,000
59 7,000
60 5,600
61 2,800
62 1,100
63 700
64 400
65 300
65 and over 200
Total 370,100

Numbers are rounded to the nearest 100.


Annual survey of teachers in service and teacher vacancies, 618g, and Database of Teacher Records.

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Joyce Glasser
Posted on 11 Dec 2008 1:06 am (Report this annotation)

There's no fixed retirement age. Teachers can work up until age 75. But fewer than one half of one percent of the teachers in the UK are 65 or over. What is being done to retain older teachers? Are older people being encouraged to retrain and become teachers? Are they allowed to become teachers? It wouldn't seem so. Is it possible that almost all teachers began their careers so young that they all want to retire at 60 or 65? What about those becoming teachers at 50 or 55? They should be the ones working past 65, but there are so few as to suggest older people are not being encouraged to enter the teaching profession.