DfE consults on plans to make FE teachers fully qualified in schools

A consultation has been launched which could pave the way for further education (FE) teachers to work in schools as qualified members of staff.

The Department for Education (DfE) has outlined plans to reduce relevant bureaucracy so lecturers can be qualified for school teaching without doing any further training, assessment or serving statutory.

Under the proposals, teachers with Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status will have qualified teacher status and be able to work in schools on a permanent basis.

The current system means FE teachers can only be appointed in schools as temporary and unqualified members of staff.

Schools Minister Nick Gibb said: “These are important deregulatory proposals that will make it easier for many highly talented teachers to remain in the classroom.”

Professor Alison Wolf recommended the restrictions on QTLS status be removed in a review of vocational education published earlier this year.

She argued the measures were making it increasingly difficult for schools to provide a high standard of vocational teaching.

Toni Fazaeli, chief executive of the Institute for Learning (IfL), said: “Some 5,000 further education teachers made the case for QTLS to be recognised for teaching in schools, on a par with QTS, as their contribution to the Wolf review.

“IfL has consistently made the case for our members’ professionalism and the professional status of QTLS to be recognised for teaching in schools’ settings as well as further education, so that young people have access to expert vocational teaching wherever they learn.”

The consultation also suggests teachers with QTLS status should not be required to complete a statutory induction period in schools.

DfE, through the same consultation, also hope to make it easier for fully qualified teachers from the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand to be permitted to teach in schools as qualified teachers.

The revised regulations, if approved, would come into effect from April 2012.

The consultation, available here, will close on December 16.