New moves to alter rules on induction

3rd December 2004 at 00:00
New teachers who work for only half a term in a school will be able to add this experience to their induction requirements under new government proposals.

The Government is consulting NQTs on possible changes to the rules on induction. Under the new arrangements, NQTs employed for half a term in a single school and who later switched jobs within the same local education authority would be able to include the time as part of their total number of induction days.

At present, only teachers who work for a full term in the same school can include their experience as part of their induction. As a result, many newcomers struggle to reach the total induction requirement as they find it hard to secure a full-time job and rely on supply work that does not count towards induction.

Teachers who struggle to find a full-time job because they live in an area with a shortage of jobs would be allowed to extend the period of supply work they can do prior to induction. The current rules prevent NQTs who have not undergone induction from doing supply work for more than four terms.

New teacher Adam Proctor is near the end of a one-term contract as a history teacher at Challenge high school, in Bradford. He said the new arrangements would reduce the stress felt by many who are trying to complete induction.

He said: "I'm nervous that the next job I find won't be for a full term, and I feel conscious of a clock ticking down.

"I want to move to London in September, and I want induction out of the way by then. It's stressful enough starting a new job - anything that takes the pressure off is welcome."

Another suggestion is that NQTs would be able to take on teaching work in further education colleges that would count towards the induction period.

The proposals continue: "In England, the key stage 4 curriculum allows 14 to 16-year-olds to go into FE colleges to be taught, and there is a need to ensure FE colleges meet the same criteria as sixth-form colleges."

The Government is also proposing that an NQT who joins a school shortly after the start of term, or leaves just before the end of term, should be able to add that period to the induction as a full term, provided that the newcomer in question could be shown to have had "a full and appropriate induction programme".

Sara Bubb, of London University's Institute of Education, believes the amendments are essential.

She said: "In primary, there will be a lot of unemployment among NQTs. At the moment, in areas where it is hard to get a job, many people are being stymied - responding positively to the consultation will stop them losing their chance."

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