It has recently been revealed that the National Union of Teachers have voted against using teachers who do not have formal teaching qualifications. The NASUWT conference has come to a verdict on the Government’s new ideas of offering teaching roles to industry professionals.
The Government have suggested that individuals with vast amounts of industry expertise and experience are the perfect candidates to move into the classroom. This has been identified by the Teacher’s Union as a “cheap alternative and an “attack on professional status”.
The general secretary of the National Union of Teacher’s was forthcoming with her definition of a teacher, “A teacher is someone who has patience, enthusiasm, subject knowledge and pedagogy. A teacher has a degree and a teaching qualification.”
The argument from government officials has stemmed from the way in which independent schools have exercised their freedom to employ industry specialists to fill certain teaching roles. The fields of expertise ranges from engineers to linguists and has proved a successful strategy in many independent schools.
The Teacher’s Union general secretary, Chris Keates was open with his opinions on the matter, “our children and young people have been robbed of a fundamental entitlement to be taught by qualified teachers. The decision to remove qualified teacher status had nothing to do with raising standards and everything to do with reducing costs, depressing teachers’ pay and feeding the free market.”
It appears Labour have backed the NUT over this matter and have promised to make qualified teacher status a requirement for permanent teaching staff in state schools. This is a interesting stance and the motivations of this backing may be disputable, but the future of qualified teacher status is sure to be an issue that will see no quick result.
There are many ways in which to gain Teaching and Teaching Assistant qualifications, and the NUT are confident in ensuring a qualified teaching staff for our children’s future.