There are now over 468,000 full time equivalent (FTE) teachers in state funded schools in England, which is an increase of 27,000 (6%) since 2010. This makes it the highest number of FTE of teachers since the School Workforce Census began in 2010.
The Department has put in place a range of measures, including bursaries worth £28,000 tax free and scholarships worth £30,000 tax free, to encourage talented trainees to key subjects such as mathematics, physics, chemistry and computing. The Initial Teacher Training financial incentives package for the 2024/25 recruitment cycle, which incentivises candidates to take teacher training in hard to recruit subjects, is worth up to £196 million, which is an increase of 15 million on the last cycle.
Teacher retention is key to ensuring effective teacher supply and quality. To support retention, the Department is funding a Levelling Up Premium worth up to £3,000 after tax for mathematics, physics, chemistry and computing teachers in the first five years of their careers who choose to work in disadvantaged schools, including in Education Investment Areas. For 2024/25 and 2025/26, the Department will be providing around £100 million each year to double the rates of the Levelling Up Premium to up to £6,000 after tax.
On 13 July, the Department announced that it is accepting the School Teachers Review Body’s recommendations for the 2023/24 pay award for teachers and leaders. This means that teachers and leaders in maintained schools received a pay award of 6.5%, which is the highest pay award for teachers in over 30 years. This delivers the Government’s manifesto commitment for school teachers in all regions of the country to have a starting salary of at least £30,000.
The Department has also launched a new and updated suite of National Professional Qualifications (NPQs) for teachers and school leaders at all levels, designed for those who want to develop expertise in high quality teaching practice to those leading multiple schools across trusts. Four leadership NPQs are available to help boost leaders’ existing knowledge and confidence as they progress into more senior roles. This includes an NPQ in Headship (NPQH), Executive Leadership (NPQEL), Senior Leadership (NPQSL) and Early Years Leadership (NPQEYL). An Early Headship Coaching offer (EHCO) is also available to professionals who are new to the role of headship.
The qualifications are part of a wider set of teacher development reforms. These qualifications sit alongside the support, training and development which is available through the entirety of a teacher’s career.