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White female teacher with white secondary pupils in classroom

Commenting on the House of Commons Education Committee’s report on teacher recruitment, training and retention, Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of NASUWT – The Teachers’ Union, said:
“The Education Committee’s report on teacher shortages accurately recognises many of the recruitment and retention issues faced by the profession. What it fails to acknowledge sufficiently is that the problems affect almost all locations, phases and subjects. It is truly a national crisis.
“There is a disproportionate focus on so-called shortage subjects and an assumed need for differentiated pay approaches, yet small targeted interventions cannot hope to compensate for the pay shortfall experienced by all teachers. In real terms, teachers’ pay has declined by up to 30% in the last ten years.
“We know that teachers’ high workloads have a direct impact on recruitment and retention. The report focuses mainly on accountability-related drivers of workload, but there are many other factors that need to be addressed. Underfunding, unrealistic levels of bureaucracy, and escalating challenges related to pupil behaviour and wellbeing are all pushing teachers’ workloads to catastrophic levels.
“The Education Committee’s report comes just as the STRB is finally set to deliver this year’s pay recommendations to the Government. Teachers and leaders will be profoundly disappointed if the STRB’s recommendations contain similar narrowly focused and short term approaches to addressing the pay-related drivers of the teacher shortage. 
“Today’s teachers need a government that is willing to step up, restore pay, and tackle the real drivers of workload. But it seems we don’t just have a shortage of teachers – we have a shortage of Government ministers willing to be held accountable for the problem.”


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