Leaving rates high for EBacc teachers

New research has found that maths, science and language teachers have high rates of leaving the profession, especially in the first five years.

Analysis carried out by National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) found that teachers of Ebacc subjects have a “particularly high rate” of leaving the profession, which could make it difficult for the government to achieve its objective for 90 per cent of pupils to be entered in a GCSE for one of these subjects.

The number of trainees for these subjects has also been consistently below the government’s entry targets for the last few years.

The analysis, which was funded by the Nuffield Foundation, also found that the amount of curriculum time spent on science and languages has not increased since 2011.

The NFER has also said that “the lack of growth in curriculum time could be due to reduced teacher supply constraining schools from expanding provision in these subjects”, but that “school and pupil preferences may also be influencing these trends”.

The leaving rate for technology teachers is higher than average, which might be driven by schools’ reduced demand for teachers as well as teachers’ own career decisions, according to the NFER. The analysis shows that non-EBacc subjects have all seen reductions in teaching hours since 2011.

Jack Worth, a senior economist at NFER said: “As part of NFER’s ongoing research on teacher supply, this research update has found that there are considerable differences in the proportion of teachers leaving the profession according to the subject they teach.

“Teacher supply remains a significant challenge for schools generally, and it seems evident that this is constraining schools’ ability to increase teaching time of EBacc subjects, especially science and languages.”

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