Science: Teachers

Department for Education written question – answered on 25th October 2021.

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Photo of Tan Dhesi Tan Dhesi Shadow Minister (Transport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to support subject-specific professional development for science teachers.

Photo of Robin Walker Robin Walker The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland, Minister of State (Education)

We are committed to ensuring that all schools have access to highly skilled teachers. The department funds a package of programmes to support subject-specific professional development for science teachers. These include the network of Science Learning Partnerships delivering local continuous professional development (CPD) and support to increase the take up of triple science, Project Enthuse which provides bursaries for teachers to participate in CPD, the Isaac Physics programme which offers support and activities in physics problem-solving to teachers and students studying GCSE and A level physics, and the Stimulating Physics Network to improve the take up of physics. In addition, we also recently announced our levelling-up premium which offers incentives of up to £3,000 to recruit the best teachers across the country.

The department is providing every early career teacher access to free, high-quality training and support underpinned by the Early Career Framework (ECF). The ECF was designed in consultation with the education sector and is designed to work for all early career teachers regardless of their subject, phase or context.

The training providers delivering these programmes will build on the curriculum knowledge embedded in the Initial Teacher Training core content framework and have ensured that content includes materials and exemplification that is applicable to all teachers to help them deliver high quality curriculum content.

Building on this, National Professional Qualifications (NPQs) are designed to help the teaching profession hone and develop the skills they already have, helping them to become more effective teachers and leaders inside and outside the classroom. The department is committed to ensuring that NPQs offer the best possible support to teachers and leaders wanting to expand their knowledge and skills.

The department will be introducing a reformed suite of NPQs from Autumn 2021. All teachers and school leaders in state funded schools and 16-19 organisations are able to access this new fully funded suite of qualifications. Each qualification continues to build on embedding excellence in curriculum design and delivery.

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