Category Archives: School

ECT Induction guidelines summary

The Government guidelines for Early Career Teachers was published in March 2021 and comes into force in September 2021.
So why was it introduced and what’s it all about?
The bottom line on this is in response to the alarming rate that teachers are leaving the profession within the first 2 years – currently standing at 55% this represents not only a huge number of skilled professionals but also a colossal waste of time and money for the individuals concerned and of course a loss to the profession.
Hence the notion of extending the Induction period to 2 years in order to “support” colleagues through this time and hopefully aid teacher retention. It also allows for a more structured approach to the induction period and does away with the previous potentially lax system that some schools were operating!

General stuff…

  • ECF framework based training is expected to be embedded as a central aspect of the Induction process and NOT as an additional training programme.
  • Overseen by the appropriate body it ensures that HT’s have put in place an Induction programme that is based on the ECF
  • The Induction programme lasts for 2 years (although can be shortened in some instances)
  • For ECT’s who started their NQT Induction pre Sept 2021 they have until 1st Sept 2023 to complete 3 terms required. If this is not done then they will have to complete what remains of the 2 years with ECF support.
  • Part time ECTs can reduce their Induction time if it is shown they have met the teachers standards. This would bring forward their final assessment point. This can only be done in agreement with the ECT and once 2 years have been covered (not equiv to 2 years)
  • An ECT has only 1 chance to complete their statutory Induction
  • The school should ensure that the ECT post is suitable for Induction. This will be agreed between the HT and appropriate body and includes ensuring that supervision and training meet the ECT needs

    Where an ECT has already completed part of their Induction in another institution, the headteacher/principal will contact the ECT’s previous appropriate body to obtain copies of any progress review records or assessment reports (including any interim assessments). This should establish how much induction time remains to be served and alert the new appropriate body to any concerns that have been raised about the ECT’s progress by previous employers.

What is a suitable post?

  • The school must have a competent (!) HT who is able to make a professional recommendation as regards an ECT performance against the teachers standards.
  • The post should have prior agreement with the appropriate body to quality assure the Induction process.
  • The post should provide the ECT with an ECF Induction programme
  • It should provide the opportunity for the necessary experience and support to enable the ECT to demonstrate satisfactory performance against the teachers standards.
  • The post should NOT make unreasonable demands on the ECT
  • Nor should it present the ECT on a day to day basis with disciplinary problems that are unreasonable for the setting
  • It should involve similar planning, teaching and assessment processes to the other staff in school.
  • Not involve additional non teaching responsibilities without provision for the appropriate preparation and support.
  • There should be the recommended reduced timetable used to specifically enable ECTs to undertake activities in the Induction programme
  • At registration the appropriate body should give the ECT a named contact with whom they can raise and concerns about the Induction programme that they are unable to resolve in school. (This person is not directly involved in monitoring, supporting the ECT or making decisions on Induction completion)
  • The appropriate body must be notified once an ECT has been appointed so that arrangements can be made for start of the process.

Appropriate bodies
From September 2021, regulations will provide that the appropriate body
function can be performed by the following bodies:
• Local authorities
• Teaching school hubs
• Other organisations which the Secretary of State has determined
may act in this role
Appropriate bodies have two key roles which will be described in the
Monitoring of support – appropriate bodies will
check that early career teachers are receiving their statutory
entitlements, and that regard is had to the statutory guidance.
provide ECF fidelity checks, ensuring schools are supported to
provide ECTs with an ECF-based induction. This new aspect of
the monitoring role is explained in more detail in Chapter 4.
Monitoring of assessment – appropriate bodies will make the final
decision as to whether the ECT has satisfactorily met the Teachers’
Standards based on the headteacher’s recommendation.

Monitoring of support and assessment during Induction

Suitable monitoring and support programmes must be in place for the ECT to meet their professional development needs and include –

  • Programmes of training that support the ECT in understanding and apply knowledge and skills set out in the ECF
  • Regular 1 : 1 mentored sessions
  • Support and guidance from designated Induction tutors
  • Observations of teaching with written feedback
  • progress reviews of the programme by the Induction tutor to set and review developmental targets against the standards
  • ECT to be able to observe other teachers


ECF based training is expected to be embedded as a central aspect of Induction and NOT an add on.
There are 3 ways a school can choose to provide the training

  • Funded provider – schools choose to work with providers accredited by the DFE (face to face and online) funded by the DFE
  • Schools deliver their own training using DFE materials
  • Schools design and deliver their own 2 year Induction programme based on the ECF
  • Appointments must be made for the positions of Induction tutor and also a mentor

Observation of teaching

  • To be carried out by the Induction tutor or another suitable person from inside or outside the school
  • Observations must be carried out at regular intervals (?)
  • Feedback should be provided promptly and be constructive, brief with a written record outlining identified development needs

Progress reviews

  • These should be carried out each term
  • They are to be informed by existing evidence of the ECTs teaching and have sufficient detail so that there is nothing unexpected for the ECT when it comes to the formal assessment.
  • A written record of each progress review should be retained and there must be a copy for the ECT. The records clearly stating wether the ECT is on track for a successful Induction…summarising collected evidence and stating agreed development targets. The objectives for the ECT should be reviewed and revised in relations to the Teachings standards and the need of the ECT
  • The Induction tutor should notify the appropriate body and ECT after each progress review. If the ECT is NOT making satisfactory progress they should outline the plan to be put in place to assist the ECT to get back on track

Formal Assessments

  • These happen in term 3 and term 6
  • All evidence must be drawn from ECT work as a teacher during Induction. There is no need for the ECT to create anything new.
  • Terms of assessment (final) will form the basis of the HTs recommendation on the Induction period.
  • Once assessment completed the ECT should add their comments. After signing, the ECT should get the original and a copy will be sent to the appropriate body within 10 days of the final meeting. This body will make the final judgement.
  • An ECT who fails Induction and does not appeal will be dismissed within 10 working days.


The above represents a summary of the main points and features of the statutory guidance and as such gives you an easy point of reference for the basics.
Of course if you do need to know more detail then you should refer to the full statutory guidance a copy of which can be found in the link below.

I have also written an article outlining the basics of the Early careers Framework and how that operates and the link can be seen below.


Early Careers Framework

A brief summary…

What is the Early Career Framework?

The early career framework (ECF) was designed to make sure Early Career Teachers focus on learning the things that make the most difference in the classroom and their professional practice.

ECF based training is expected to be embedded as a central aspect of Induction and NOT an add on.

There are 3 ways a school can choose to provide the training

  • Funded provider – schools choose to work with providers accredited by the DFE (face to face and online) funded by the DFE
  • Schools deliver their own training using DFE materials
  • Schools design and deliver their own 2 year Induction programme based on the ECF

The core induction programmes include high-quality development materials, underpinned by the ECF, which will support early career teachers to develop the essential knowledge and skills to set them up for a successful and fulfilling career in teaching.

Schools have an opportunity to take advantage of the benefits of the ECF by using the core induction programmes published below or to follow the options listed above and make the decision as to whichever way best suits them and their early career teachers.

Take a look at the programmes outlined below and you will be able to see the sort of training that you should be expecting during your Induction year.

ECF core induction programme suppliers
The Department for Education has selected six expert teacher training providers who have each developed their own core induction programme based on the ECF:

  • Ambition Institute
  • Education Development Trust
  • Teach First
  • UCL Early Career Teacher Consortium
  • Best practice Network
  • Capita with the University of Birmingham

Each set of materials cover the five core areas of the ECF:

  • behaviour management
  • pedagogy
  • curriculum
  • assessment
  • professional behaviours

Although structured differently, each programme contains approximately the same amount of self-study material in terms of hours covered.

Schools can use or draw upon any of six core induction programmes published here in whichever way is most beneficial to them and their early career teachers.

You can read more about these suppliers on their own websites or in the course descriptions below.


Ambition Institute
This programme takes a recurring weekly approach to study, so teachers and the mentors supporting them can get into powerful routines for improvement. The programme is composed of three strands, each of which has a core focus: mainly Behaviour, Instruction, or Subject. Each week includes concise, accessible summaries of the evidence, with optional further reading, so teachers can gain understanding quickly. The materials also include helpful examples of good classroom practice.
View Ambition Institute programme

Education Development Trust
Created with schools, for schools, this programme is based on a deep understanding of the needs of ECTs and the busy colleagues who guide them. The focus throughout is on developing the ECT–Mentor relationship, and providing a powerful professional development opportunity for both parties. The 12 ‘blocks’ of learning take ECTs from foundational knowledge through to mastery, increasing in challenge and depth as the ECTs grow in experience, confidence and understanding. Building on the principles of instructional coaching, these materials are accessible, engaging and practical.
View Education Development Trust programme

Teach First
Each module in this programme has been broken down into weekly sessions to provide you with informed and bitesize information on best practice. Throughout the online study materials, you will be prompted to complete activities and reflect on your practice, considering what you are doing well and how you could improve.
View Teach First programme

UCL Early Career Teacher Consortium
This programme draws upon the theory and practice in the ECF to combine practical activity and inquiry. The programme targets both ‘practical fluency’ – the capacity to deploy a range of teacher practices confidently and skilfully – and the wider knowledge, experience and beliefs required to make use of these practices in real schools, with real pupils and with their outcomes in mind.
View UCL Early Career Teacher Consortium programme

Best Practice Network

Capita with the University of Birmingham

What happens now?

From September 2021, it will become a statutory requirement for all schools to offer all Early Career Teachers a 2-year induction based on the ECF.  Schools will be able to choose from three approaches to deliver an ECF-based induction to their early career teachers:

Full induction programme
A funded provider-led programme offering high-quality training for early career teachers and their mentors alongside the professional development materials.

Core induction programme
Schools can draw on the content of the high-quality core induction programmes to deliver their own early career teacher and mentor training

School-based programme
Schools design and deliver their own ECF-based induction programme.

This gives you a broad based overview of the role and function of the new Early Career Framework. But do check which system your school is using for your Induction Training.

Support and training in your Induction Period – just how good should it be?

This applies right across your teaching training course and into your induction period- so it should be good….shouldn’t it?

There are many and varied ways to train to be a teacher – yet all should, in theory, prepare you to the same level of competence to enable you to begin your teaching career with confidence.

However a recent report has highlighted that those colleagues who follow the PGCE route into teaching seem to be at a disadvantage due to the amount and pace of work required to push everything into 1 year. This workload will be familiar to any colleagues reading who have followed this route – but worryingly it’s not the workload that is causing concern but the resultant knock on effect in a negative way, on the practical support and training that these students are receiving. In short many PGCE students do not feel that they are practically ready to start their teaching careers with confidence.

Now it’s not the remit of this article to look into the perceived failures of PGCE training. However if we broadly look at the picture we should expect to see that whatever training you receive it should equip you to both understand the practical requirements of teaching and also to have experience and support in applying these in the classroom. After all, its 1 thing to talk about this but quite another to actually do it!

As I have pointed out previously the ECT induction period is there for a purpose. There is a recognition that the transition from teacher training to actually being a teacher in school does need to be supported and managed. But the induction years are not meant to be “training years” as such – no that is the purpose and role of the University, college and the variety of teacher training establishments. Rather the purpose of the induction period is to assist, support and advise colleagues as they practically pull together all the strands into their professional classroom practice.

Teacher training establishments therefore should be providing the foundations and initial practical building blocks upon which the “induction period” can build and cement. (don’t you just love construction analogies!)

The Induction Period – The Induction tracker is a working document against which a newly qualified teacher and also their school can judge both achievements and progress as the induction progresses. Once completed the records will give a detailed report of the teachers achievements across the induction time and also document any training and support as well as mentor input that was given. As a document that is “running in the background” to a colleagues day to day teaching, it reflects progress in real time and can identify and report on any areas where input or support are needed and subsequently the resultant outcomes of that support. The detail and dated aspects of the tracker are especially useful on review by both the teacher and also the school.

Support and training:- The nature of support and training falls into 2 categories.

  1. Support and training that occurs as either part of the teacher training course or during the induction year process. This will either be part of the course undertaken in the training establishment (or could involve some forms of training courses at placement schools) Or Induction period training courses which may either be school based or be part of ongoing induction support run for all ECTs by Authorised bodies. It is recommended that ALL courses and dates are logged by colleagues as part of their developing CV.
  2. The second level of support that I am going to refer to occurs when an ECT is experiencing difficulties during their induction time and we will go into more detail on this below.

Induction Period support

It is imperative to an ECT that the school uses the Induction period standards document – this provides the basic attainment and assessment thresholds that need to be met during this time and is completed progressively by both the ECT and Mentor. It is also the basis from which any support programme is devised should an ECT be experiencing problems in any area. Schools and mentors MUST raise any problem as soon as possible to enable support to be introduced immediately and the following procedures should be followed. It is NOT acceptable for a problem to be left and then reported upon at the end of a term if that potential failure point has not been previously identified and supported. Procedures to be followed are shown below.

Induction year support :-

As you can see from the above, there is a very definite support process for colleagues who may be experiencing difficulties during the Induction year. However do remember that you are not expected to be “the finished article” at this time and the Induction year is designed specifically to enable your transition from training to classroom to be supported and guided – that’s why the structures are in place. Everything is based on the Induction standards documentation…that’s why it is so vital!

Support from the NEU

If you are involved in any part of this process then of course you have the support of your Union to advise and guide. I would recommend that you contact your union straight away and to keep them fully informed of the situation and how it is being managed. The National Education Union is the largest teaching union in the UK and has a wealth of experience in NQT support and is up to date with all the processes and procedures of the Induction year and can advise you accordingly. If you are not currently a member of the NEU but would like to join then the link is below.

The NEU is recommended by Primary Practice.

Your ECT Induction – what can you expect?

A Primary Practice / NEU support article

Your ECT Induction plunges you, as an Early Career teacher, into a world within which you may feel totally unprepared. Now this can, of course vary from individual to individual and does depend to some extent on the nature of your training – but the bottom line is that training to teach and the actual fact of being “the class teacher” are worlds apart!

So what can you expect as a baseline when you finally land your 1st teaching post?

Here’s my list of things that you should expect to be in place to enable your smooth transition into the world of teaching.

  • You should be registered with the Local Education Authority as an ECT
  • In line with this you should be given time by your school to attend training and information courses run by the an Authorised provider or via your school under supervision
  • Your LEA will have their own version of the induction Standards and these should be operational in your school
  • As an ECT you need to be given the support of an experienced mentor in school
  • You are entitled to NQT release time (10%) in addition to your PPA time
  • The above should also include professional development and support to build upon your initial teacher training.
  • Lastly but by no means least…you should expect your school leadership team to have “realistic expectations” from you with regards to your progress and development….sadly this is not always the case!

The NEU, Primary Practice and ECT support

Primary Practice are always here to help and it’s as simple as either posting on the group for colleague support or by messaging Primary Practice through the group for matters which you may not wish to share. In many cases problems or queries can be easily sorted, however there may be times when advice is recommended from the NEU and that is just where our collaboration begins.

By becoming a member of the National Education Union you have the support and advice of the largest teaching union in the UK. Whatever problems you may be encountering or questions you may have regarding your training or induction year then help is at hand and advisers are always happy to advise.

Your local branch/district can also provide help and advice. If you do not know the name/ telephone number of your rep or local branch/district secretary, or do not have a rep in your workplace see contact-us

You can also call the Adviceline on 0345 811 8111 or email for advice and support.

To join the NEU simply use the Primary Practice/ NEU link