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Vocational GCSEs

Staff teaching the new vocational GCSE courses in state schools will need to have Qualified Teacher Status, schools minister Stephen Timms has confirmed.

"While there will not be further statutory requirements concerning qualifications, headteachers will be expected to match teachers' backgrounds and experiences as closely as possible to the subjects on offer," he said in answer to a question from Theresa May, the shadow education spokesman.

"A comprehensive training and support programme will be available to ensure teachers are well prepared for, and supported, during the delivery of courses."

Ivan Lewis, the minister responsible for 16 to 19-year-olds, assured Ms May that this autumn's annual review of teacher-training targets would take account of any likely additional demand for teachers as a result of the new vocational courses, which are to be introduced in September 2002.

Compiled from Hansard by Diane Spencer

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