Scottish head teachers call for new powers to appoint staff

Head teachers in Scotland have called for new powers to select staff they believe are best suited to improving standards at their schools.

Councils currently have control over recruitment of teaching staff and the Association of Headteachers and Deputes in Scotland (AHDS) argues that handing this power over to head teachers will allow them boost performance.

Greg Dempster, general secretary of AHDS, told the Herald Scotland: “Recruitment is done centrally and teachers are then allocated to schools so they don’t get to advertise and interview for specific vacancies.

“Schools can have teachers placed with them and then they find they are not the ones they would have picked for their staff complement or for dealing with the pupils they have.

“Headteachers can be part of the general recruitment process for the authority, but not for their specific schools.”

Ministers are currently considering changes to the recruitment processes, but the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities, which represents the vast majority of Scotland's councils, said their role in recruitment was ‘invaluable’.

A spokesman told the Herald Scotland: “Recruitment can be a tricky issue and the truth is that councils provide a helpful HR service for schools and we work in collaboration with head teachers to ensure that we have the resources required to deliver for the local area.”

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