Education Select Committee highlights importance of great teaching
01 May 2012
The cross-party Education Select Committee today published their report following the inquiry into ‘Attracting, training and retaining the best teachers’, which set out to understand better the qualities found in great teachers, and to examine how such people might be attracted more readily, trained as well as possible, and motivated to remain within the profession.
Teach First submitted written and oral evidence to the inquiry, with Amanda Timberg, Director of Leadership Development at Teach First, appearing before the Committee at the House of Commons at the end of last year.
The Committee’s report, Great Teachers, focuses its recommendations on the critical importance of high-quality teachers, saying that great teaching accelerates learning, improves grades and makes a significant difference to lifetime earnings of individuals and thus the wealth of the nation.
They particularly praised Teach First’s impact on recruitment into the profession, commenting that “we believe there may be much to be learned from the selection processes of Teach First”. The committee also confirmed their support for the expansion of Teach First, stating “we support the announced expansion and development of Teach First, which continues to provide a number of excellent teachers, including those who would not otherwise have considered the profession”.
Amongst other recommendations, the report also argued that the ongoing professional development for teachers has been neglected for far too long, recommending a new College of Teaching and an entitlement to professional development for all teaching staff.
MPs also propose radical reforms to the existing career structures for teachers and a new National Teacher Sabbatical Scholarship programme, where outstanding teachers can undertake a period of further research or employment in a related field to improve their practice.