Education CommitteeWritten evidence submitted by Billericay Educational Consortium

1. In terms of the class of degree necessary to qualify as a teacher, from the experience of the providers in our local network, each year a number of trainees who hold third class degrees qualify at the outstanding level.

Recommendation:

Providers to be given discretion (say 10% of cohort) to offer places to applicants with a third class degree with extenuating circumstances providing they meet all other recruitment criteria at an outstanding level.

2. In regard to the proposals for bursary funding there is a concern that applicants with a 2:2 who may well go on to become outstanding teachers, may be unable to afford to train. The consequence of which may be that we are either unable to fill our places or we will recruit richer teachers not more capable teachers. It is also noteworthy that class of degree is often not comparable between HEIs. A division in funding is also likely to have a negative impact on the collaborative nature of teacher training within a cohort.

Recommendation:

Equal bursaries could be allocated and additional monies awarded when trainees meet the Ofsted outstanding criteria on completion of their training.

Initial Bursary

£4,000

Award for excellence

£2,000

The cost to TDA currently is £6220 per capita so this would most likely be a saving.

3. The current cost to train using the SCITT model is about £9,000 per capita. As providers we contact graduates annually during the first five years after leaving the course to gather destination data, providing a highly reliable source of data. SCITT provision tends to have retention rates of over 95% and has a large proportion of teachers in specialist, leadership and management roles.

Recommendation:

A full analysis of the cost of each training route should be compared to employment and destination data including long-term retention rates.

4. In conversations with our local head teachers we believe there may be some fundamental flaws in the school direct model. In our view these are:

(I)The assumption that head teachers will have the knowledge and skills-base to manage initial teacher training.

(II)The assumption that schools have the administrative capacity.

(III)The assumption that schools know a year in advance that they will have a vacancy (most teachers give 1 terms notice not one year).

Recommendation:

Since SCITT providers already build successful provision upon good relationships with schools, that allow us to meet their recruitment needs. There should be an increase in the provision of existing successful providers who have high retention rates and outstanding attainment Ofsted grades to continue to meet school demand.

5. We provide academic excellence, often drawing on a lecturing body from within universities and combining this with the knowledge and experience of current practitioners to provide a cohesive training that amalgamates theory and practice seamlessly. This is only possible because we train staff in schools so that the theoretical content is meaningfully applied in the classroom leading to the trainees becoming reflective and effective teachers improving the quality of learning for the children in their care.

Recommendation:

Any training programmes developed must include a structured training programme for staff (CPD) in schools by experienced providers.

6. In our local network we all deliver voice training for teachers in our programmes and consider that this is an essential ingredient of effective and outstanding teaching. Ofsted inspections have judged this to be an outstanding element of the provision and provide evidence of its impact on the teaching of phonics, the management of behavior and teacher absenteeism through vocal damage (more evidence available on request).

Recommendation:

All ITT should include voice training for teachers that encompasses vocal care and effective use of voice for teaching.

March 2012

Prepared 30th April 2012