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One in 15 Redbridge teachers not qualified or working towards qualified teacher status

PUBLISHED: 07:00 10 July 2019

183 are not working towards a qualification. Picture: John Stillwell/PA Wire/PA Images

183 are not working towards a qualification. Picture: John Stillwell/PA Wire/PA Images

PA Wire/Press Association Images

More than 150 unqualified teachers were working at state schools in Redbridge last year, figures reveal.

Department for Education data shows there were 2,748 full-time classroom teachers in 2018 but 183 of those neither had qualified teacher status (QTS) nor were working towards it.

This means more than one in 15 teachers in Redbridge state schools do not have QTS, which is gained after getting a recognised teaching qualification and completing practical training.

Academies, which are state-funded but are not run by local authorities, can employ teachers without QTS.

Teachers' union NASUWT said that every child has the right to be taught by a qualified teacher, and called for the government to force schools to hire fully trained staff.

"What we should be working towards is a qualified teacher for every child," said Chris Keates, NASUWT general secretary ,

"Internationally, high-quality education is associated with employing high-quality staff in schools.

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"We have been very clear that what the government should do is return to a position where, certainly in state-funded schools, there is a requirement to employ a qualified teacher."

Kevin Courtney, joint general secretary of the National Education Union, said the use of non-QTS teachers demonstrates the teacher recruitment and school funding crisis.

He added: "It is vital that the government addresses the root causes of teacher recruitment and retention, and starts to give schools the funding they need to ensure every child has the education they deserve."

A Department for Education spokesperson said more than 95% of teachers in state-funded schools have qualified teacher status and last year saw an additional 34,500 new trainee teachers recruited, despite an extremely competitive labour market and the lowest levels of unemployment for decades, "showing that teaching continues to be an attractive profession".

"We want children to have great teachers who can inspire and excite them so have given schools the freedom to employ experts, such as scientists, sports people or musicians, to add value and improve the learning experience for pupils," he added.

Across England, there were the equivalent of around 383,400 full-time classroom teachers working in state schools in 2018.

Of those, about one in 25 did not have QTS and were not on the way to gaining it - around 14,800 in total.

A Redbridge Council spokeswoman said: "We want all pupils in Redbridge to receive the very best teaching and believe the QTS status is an important aspect of being an excellent teacher.

"We are extremely proud that all our schools continue to thrive and succeed, with nearly 94 per cent of pupils educated in good or outstanding schools."

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