Induction for NQTs lies at the heart of early professional development. This week we discuss the new guidance NQT induction and what it means for CPD leaders

Be willing to be a beginner every single morning.
Meister Eckart

Induction is getting an overhaul this year with the new statutory arrangements being implemented from the 1st September. To help schools through this transition, we have gathered all the most up to date guidance you need to provide your NQTs with good quality induction. And in our Issues and Information section we explore the Rose Review, phonics and the training of new teachers.

Practical tips: The new induction arrangements for NQTs
Last month saw the launch of new guidance for the induction of NQTs. Based on the latest statutory regulations for induction which come into force on 1st September 2008, they give schools and NQTs (and others) detailed and specific guidance on exactly how an induction period should be, allowing for the fact that each one must be tailored to the needs of the NQT concerned.

There are several key differences between the current arrangements and the new ones, in particular:

  • Further Education institutions will be able to offer an induction period for NQTs as long as they comply with certain conditions;
  • the definition of the induction period has been clarified and made more flexible;
  • the appropriate body can now shorten the induction period by up to 29 days in certain specific circumstances;
  • when making a decision on appeals, the General Teaching Council for England will have an extra day to communicate that decision; and
  • there will no longer be a requirement to complete induction within five years once it has been started.

In terms of supporting a teacher’s early professional development and establishing them soundly in the teaching profession, induction really is all-important. Getting it right from the word go is essential if NQTs are to thrive in their first year and not only meet the Core Standards but also continue to meet all the Standards for the award of QTS too.

For anyone with responsibilities for seeing an NQT safely through their induction period it is well worth spending half an hour or so reading the guidance in its entirety. The key roles and responsibilities are clearly defined and the step-by-step approach makes it as easy as possible to ensure that schools provide an induction period with professional development and ultimate success being utterly achievable. 

Find out more…

Issues and Information: Teacher trainees and phonics

A recent survey by Ofsted, Teacher trainees and phonics – An evaluation of the response of providers of initial teacher training to the recommendations of the Rose Review set out to evaluate how well initial teacher training institutions have responded to the recommendations of the Rose Review of teaching early reading. Among its findings, inspectors reported that:

  • Providers of initial teacher training responded generally well to the Rose Review. The taught element of their courses had been developed to accommodate the review’s recommendations and to equip trainees with necessary skills.
  • Most of the courses surveyed were well planned and the emphasis on systematic phonics had increased considerably since September 2007.
  • The quality of the providers’ training was generally good. The centrally-based training by HEIs and SCITTs was generally better than that by the small number of providers of employment-based routes in the survey.
  • Most of the trainees observed were well prepared to teach early reading. They had good knowledge and understanding of early reading and they applied this well in their teaching. They were not as effectively prepared to assess individual pupils’ phonic knowledge or to teach pupils how to spell.
  • Most of the providers had yet to establish robust procedures to ensure that all trainees were observed teaching early reading, including systematic phonics, and that the feedback they received was sufficiently specific about the quality of their teaching of phonics.
  • Not all the providers arranged suitable opportunities for trainees to observe high quality phonics teaching.
  • Few of the trainees seen teaching during the survey had a clear understanding of the place of systematic phonics in supporting weaker readers at Key Stage 2.

There are clear implications for training and development in major initiatives such as phonics not just for those who are starting out in the profession but also for those in their early years of teaching and beyond. Taking the findings of such a survey as a basis for reflection on how things stand in your school can be a great starting point.

Find out more…

This e-bulletin issue was first published in July 2008

About the author: Elizabeth Holmes qualified as a teacher at the Institute of Education, London and is the author of several books specialising in the areas of professional development and teacher well-being.