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Education secretary promises action on recruitment and retention

Education secretary promises action on recruitment and retention

A package of measures is to be introduced by ministers to improve the recruitment and retention of teachers.

Justine Greening, the education secretary, said the Department for Education was carrying out a "deep dive analysis" on why the country is facing a teacher shortage, and acknowledged that factors such as Ofsted and social deprivation had a part to play.

In her address to delegates at the Association of School and College Leaders' national conference in Birmingham last week, Ms Greening said heads and teachers were "drivers of social mobility" who were best able to inspire and engage pupils.

Drawing on her own experience of training as an accountant, Ms Greening said she wanted to strengthen qualified teacher status so that it provided the "structured and sustained programme of development and support" that she had had, so that new entrants were "not just coping".

Ms Greening said it was not enough to look at recruitment and retention problems at a national level, but schools' varying locations, circumstances and challenges.

One of the her first targets would be in Northern England, where "we will invest a substantial portion of the £70 million for the Northern Powerhouse Schools Strategy in piloting new approaches to attracting and retaining teachers".

Ms Greening added that a "cultural shift" was needed to make flexible working the norm in the profession. She said schools were losing good teachers who took a career break to have a family and might never return to the classroom. She told heads she planned to organise a summit later this year to discuss the idea.

Source: Sec

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