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!
- 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.
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
- 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
- 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.