To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to help promote the take up of careers in teaching (a) humanities and (b) arts subjects.
The number of teachers remains high, with over 461,000 working in state-funded schools across the country, 20,000 more than in 2010. Over 37,000 new trainee teachers were recruited to start training in the 2021/22 academic year.
The department is driving an ambitious transformation programme to overhaul the process of becoming a teacher, from stimulating initial interest through world-class marketing through to the start of training.
In October 2021, the government’s new digital service, ‘apply for teacher training’, was rolled out. This is a key milestone in the delivery of a more streamlined, user-friendly application route. New data and insight from government services will also drive innovation with a view to boosting recruitment in priority subjects.
To promote careers in teaching humanities and arts subjects, the department uses a combination of financial incentives, marketing, and school experience.
Trainee teachers on both undergraduate and postgraduate initial teacher training (ITT) courses are able to apply for student finance, regardless of the subject they train to teach. This includes a tuition fee loan, maintenance loan and additional means-tested funding for trainees in particular circumstances, including those with children, adult dependants, or a disability. Trainees on employment-based courses are ineligible for student finance as they earn a salary whilst they train instead.
In addition, the department is offering a £15,000 tax-free bursary for both languages and geography trainee teachers starting ITT courses in the 2022/23 academic year. The government will review the need for financial incentives across all subjects before announcing the bursaries for the 2023/24 academic year.
The department’s teaching marketing campaign provides inspiration and support to explore a career in teaching and directs people to the ‘Get Into Teaching service’. Through the website, prospective candidates in any phase or subject can access support and advice through expert one-to-one teacher training advisers, a contact centre, and a national programme of events. The ‘get school experience’ digital service also arranges school experience placements between prospective candidates and schools. This service is available here: https://schoolexperience.education.gov.uk/.