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Lecturers' banishment from schools to end

FE news | Published in TES Newspaper on 4 March, 2011 | By: Stephen Exley

Alison Wolf recommends ‘crazy’ rule is dropped in her review of vocational education

A “crazy” historical anomaly preventing FE lecturers from teaching in schools is to come to an end.

As a result of the Wolf review of 14-19 vocational education, published yesterday, QTLS (qualified teacher learning and skills) status is finally set to be recognised in schools, placing college lecturers on an equal footing with their school counterparts, who are allowed to teach in colleges.

Until now, school teachers with QTS (qualified teacher status) have been allowed to work in colleges, but FE lecturers have not been able to teach in schools.

The report by Professor Alison Wolf, an expert in the relationship between education and the labour market who is based at King’s College London, said: “This will allow schools to recruit qualified professionals to teach courses to school level (rather than bussing pupils to colleges) with clear efficiency gains.”

Professor Wolf told The TES the discrepancy was “crazy”, adding: “I can’t see any justification for it. These are two nationally recognised teaching qualifications; they should be viewed as equivalent and they should be treated the same way.”

She also called for guidance to allow vocational experts without QTLS status to take classes unsupervised in order to enable more “high calibre” teaching.

Brian Lightman, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said: “ASCL strongly welcomes the recommendation that qualified FE teachers be allowed to work in schools. We have been saying for years that this is a historical anomaly that needs to be addressed and it is gratifying that the Government has listened.”

Professor Wolf also said it was a “national scandal” that some 16 to 19- year-old students do not have good GCSEs in English and maths, and recommended that they should be required to take steps towards obtaining the qualifications if they do not have them when they enrol.

Professor Wolf acknowledged the “big upheaval” her recommendation would cause, but insisted colleges could afford to foot the bill.

“I feel very strongly about this one. Maths and English are required right through life. The funding levels are not that low, it’s not like there’s no money in the system,” she said.

Professor Wolf also called for a fixed level of funding for all FE students, varying between courses. “The funding should follow the student,” the report said.

It called on the Government to look at “greatly increasing” the number of low-achieving students who progress directly to level 2 programmes at 16, and called for an end to the “micromanagement” of the FE sector.

A set of “general principles” on the assessment, contact time and general structure of 16-19 vocational qualifications should be drawn up, the review added, with students encouraged to follow “non qualifications-based activity” and colleges told to avoid teaching “entirely occupational” courses.

But Professor Wolf insisted FE funding and performance measures should focus on “employment outcomes” rather than merely on “the accrual of qualifications”.

She called for an evaluation of the general education component of 16-19 apprenticeships, warning there should be sufficient non-vocational content to allow students to progress to further or higher education.

Students should also not be prevented from taking equal or even lower- level qualifications if they want to switch subject or sector, the report said, adding: “That is their choice.”

Professor Wolf called for the legal right of colleges to enrol under-16s to be “made explicit”.

The review also recommended that it should not be made compulsory for qualifications to comply with the qualifications and credit framework (QCF), which was drawn up to recognise smaller steps of learning and enable students to build up qualifications bit by bit.

Professor Wolf called for education secretary Michael Gove to be given temporary powers to approve established qualifications which play an “important role in the vocational education system” but which have not yet been approved by sector skills councils.

The Department for Education’s formal response to the review is expected in the spring.

WOLF REVIEW: KEY POINTS

- QTLS status to be recognised in schools.

- 16 to 19-year-olds without good GCSEs in English and maths to be required to take steps towards achieving this.

- Fixed levels of funding per student for vocational qualifications.

- Focus on “employment outcomes” rather than merely on “the accrual of qualifications”.

- Subsidies for employers who take on apprentices.

- Legal right of colleges to enrol under-16s to be made explicit.

- No requirement for qualifications to comply with qualifications and credit framework.

 

  • Original headline: Lecturers’ banishment from schools is to end

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Comment (30)

  • Brilliant news

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    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    14:12
    4 March, 2011

    peblet

  • Quality!!! About time too!!!

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    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    18:18
    4 March, 2011

    Yousaf Nisar

  • Fantastic news made my weekend!!...Crack open the wine!!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    18:25
    4 March, 2011

    12manybandits

  • fantastic.............and the pay?

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    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    18:26
    4 March, 2011

    Tonyjames100

  • Well done IfL for making this possible. Let us seize the moment and also make sure QTLS can teach not just Key Stages 4 & 5 but Key Stage 3 too. Trainee secondary school teachers qualify with a minimal amount of Key Stage 5 teaching practice required (6 to 8 hours I've known in a couple of cases for sure). Presumably, if Key Stage 3 is not automatically opened up to QTLS, a period of 6 to 8 hours Key Stage 3 teaching practice will be sufficient. Does anyone know anything more on this point?

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    18:29
    4 March, 2011

    AugustineAquinas

  • I would recommend the further education to expand the vocational courses and skills for life rather than students doing GCSEs and A levels which should all be done in secondary school. Students who haven't mastered their Maths, English and Science should remain in secondary school. They must not allowed to go to university and further education with grades of Ds, Es and Fs in Maths, English and Science.

    What is the use for secondary students moving into further education who haven't got skills in Maths, English and Science? No employers will employ them after students gained their qualifications in further education. Further education should not be treated as an extension for secondary schooling. BTEC Level 3 and 4 should be offered in further education and BTEC Level 1 and 2 in secondary school if they want to go to college. Certain subjects should be taught in further education such as accountancy, book-keeping, secretarial, TFL and more on vocational subjects such as care giver, beauty therapy, fitness, cookery, nursery, customer service, events organiser, dancing, DJ, etc.

    Coursework in further education must also sit exams for 2-3 unit subjects. Plagiarism must never tolerated in all coursework. Open University is very strict on this matter.

    MRAH

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    19:09
    4 March, 2011

    laniehew

  • "She called for an evaluation of the general education component of 16-19 apprenticeships, warning there should be sufficient non-vocational content to allow students to progress to further or higher education."

    This works both ways, you can pick up skills en route and not all trades require academic rigor. Have entry requirements been relaxed for apprenticeships?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    19:16
    4 March, 2011

    Alan Gurbutt

  • The IfL site states that teachers employed in the sector before September 2007 do not have to undertake Professional Formation (although encouraged to do so) to acquire QTLS. Does anyone have any idea how lecturers would acquire proof of QTLS status?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    19:24
    4 March, 2011

    opsoft

  • "Well done IFL"? You must work for them!

    They have spent 5 million a year for how many years with a sudden boost to 12 million now we have to fund it. They have failed for all this time to do this one thing that the IFL seams to have has their only worth while goal. Now the Wolf report is in and noticed this issue, they will no doubt try to claim the credit.

    Personally I don't want to teach in a school and don't mind a little less money to stay well away!!! You know colleges will now offer to teach all the "difficult classes" for Secondary schools and it will be FE lecturers that do it at cut prices.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    19:34
    4 March, 2011

    brownglow

  • Im really glad this has been passed, i have been trying to teach in a school for 8 months now and keep getting knocked back. Hopefully my applications will be taken more seriously :)

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    20:05
    4 March, 2011

    martinhowlett

  • Equality at last! No IFL, it was not down to you, we, the college underdogs have being fighting for equality in both status and pay for many years. I hope that the uber qualified SfL lecturers get a look in - as both work and funding are drying up in FE.

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    20:18
    4 March, 2011

    soosee

  • Like many of us on here, I particularly this one of Wolf's recommendation and Gove's acceptance of it. I will complete my PGCE PCE in about 3 months time and would like the option of working in schools even if I choose not to.
    My concerns are:
    . There may be some way to go from acceptance to implementation.
    . Possible resistance from school teacher bodies. State school teaching is a degree only profession and many holders of QTLS have a Cert. Ed or DTLLS but do not have degrees. I can see teachers' unions banging (quite wrongly) about dilution of standards.
    . How will FE qualified teachers competing against QTS teachers for jobs? A school/QTS elitism could see us unfalrly discriminated against or seen as second-clas applicants.

    I think it's fab that this anachronism is being overturned; I just want to see how it works in practice.

    B.

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    20:30
    4 March, 2011

    Yorkshirebob

  • Great news for me in the short term as I've just left FE and gone self employed. I have a cert ed and a degree. I can't many of the FE lecturers putting up with school kids though!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    21:04
    4 March, 2011

    scottpawsey

  • What about ATLS? I am an FE lecturer who gained ATLS last April through IfL. I have a Level 5 subject specialism but was only put through for ATLS and not QTLS. This means I have to complete a degree and then a PGCE to teach in a secondary school. Anyone know about ATLS qualification and whether this will be included?

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    21:19
    4 March, 2011

    Maggyann2

  • Not sure about ATLS. It is an Associate teaching position, and not regarded as a full teaching role. I've not heard anything but I doubt that ATLS would be included in those immediately allowed to teach in secondary schools.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    21:35
    4 March, 2011

    Yorkshirebob

  • This just begs the question, "Why would lecturers want to???"

    Having recently gone back into secondary education after 4 years in FE, I'm now waiting for the right job to come up so I can get back to the cushy FE life!
    :)

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    23:09
    4 March, 2011

    nipperooney

  • This just begs the question, "Why would lecturers want to???"

    More pay! Longer holidays! Shorter working week!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    8:33
    5 March, 2011

    Judeng

  • Great news for those wanting to leave FE, (and also the obligation to join the IfL).

    But how does this benefit those of us who wish to teach in FE? And why should we pay £68 subs to the IfL so that others can leave it?

    How is this a success for FE?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    9:25
    5 March, 2011

    shirtandtie

  • It is good news and like the writer above, why as lecturers do we have to pay £68 IfL membership?

    I've worked in FE since 2006, having previously worked in a secondary school. I chose FE because I wanted to work with young people who wanted to be in education and learn. I teach basic skills and now functional skills and quess what? I have Year 11s in my group who have been excluded by their school and come to college instead. Either those disaffected young people or others who didn't make it past their Year 9.

    I find it interesting that I've been able to work with them at college, support them to go on an achieve qualifications yet I wouldn't have been able to 'teach' them in school.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    9:47
    5 March, 2011

    tulababe


  • "Having recently gone back into secondary education after 4 years in FE, I'm now waiting for the right job to come up so I can get back to the cushy FE life!
    :)"

    cushy in FE??? not where I was - employer put me off working in FE for life thanks to lax attitude to staff and 'customer (student) always right' attitude. whilst not strictly an IfL victory, it is nevertheless a long overdue step towards parity within the education sector.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    20:12
    5 March, 2011

    peelap

  • @nipperooney

    "This just begs the question, "Why would lecturers want to???"

    Having recently gone back into secondary education after 4 years in FE, I'm now waiting for the right job to come up so I can get back to the cushy FE life!
    :)"


    There are some prison based FE jobs being advertised now by the largest provider in the UK.
    Salary: £22 450 - £27 450 (few people are on top salary).
    Hours: 37 a week
    Teaching hours: 999 a year.
    Holidays: 38 days + bank holidays

    Try to get back into FE after 4 years and you will find the cushy life no longer exists in many colleges. Terms and conditions are far worse, teaching hours are higher, job security is non-existent and treatment of staff harsher.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    10:07
    6 March, 2011

    MrJob

  • I have been in the FE Sector for over 25 years working part-time, along side my day time job. When I retired from industry I continued to work with my FE provider long past my retirement age and achieved QTLS and Level 5 (ADTLS) numeracy specialism last year.

    It is great to see that at long last we will have some parity with Teachers. However, I doubt if schools would be interested in mature tutors like myself. In my experience many male FE tutors have retired from industry or schools and they continue to work in the FE sector for job satisfaction ,keeping their minds active and working with learners who want to learn.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    14:03
    6 March, 2011

    Psion739

  • Does this mean if I have QTLS for F.E I can now teach primary? Or is it limited to secondary? Thanks

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    16:23
    7 March, 2011

    sarahamersham

  • This is great news, but will the pay scale be the same for both QTS and QTLS qualified teachers?

    Also, I wonder if the topic of behaviour management will now become a greater part of the training for FE teachers, which would be a shame, but maybe necessary? Or maybe FE teachers could attend additional courses / study days on behaviour?

    One final point, why have secondary school teachers always been favoured for teaching the 6th form subjects instead of qualified FE teachers? Surely FE teachers should get the priority? The 6ths forms have generally been seen as an extension of the secondary subjects and are taught in a similar way, instead of being approached as adult education - I guess the question is 'when do children really become adults'? I think there is a big transition that takes place when school children leave and start at a 6th form, they want to be treated differently as adults, but instead there is often little differentiation on the part of the teachers.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    12:47
    10 March, 2011

    mu4awf

  • I have just been told by 2 unqualified teachers in the pupil referral unit I work at that QTS has been abandoned – they had it in writing - think it was their union who told them. Anyone else able to shine a light on this please? If it is true, there is no point to getting parity with QTLS ...!
    I have DTLLS and an Add. Dip in teaching English (Literacy) in the lifelong learning sector, but no degree, Was recently told by my manager in my prison teaching job that to get QTLS I need to have level 2 in ICT (I already have level 2 in Lit and Num). I am still beavering away taking my ecdl (European Computer Driving Licence) stage 2, having achieved stage 1.

    Still cannot see that a school would take me on without the degree though.

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    2:46
    15 March, 2011

    foxHelen

  • This is goods news for all

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    21:27
    5 June, 2011

    ladyzee

  • I've been teaching English in FE for 6 years, working in hospitals, airports, prisons, colleges and in the community. I have a good English degree, a PGCE in the lifelong sector and a masters degree (merit) in modern and historical language studies.

    I've complained for long enough about recent school-leavers who can't even contruct a sentence or even know what an apostrophe is, so I've decided to become pro-active and get into secondary education to see for myself what is going on! I've already turned down one offer to work in an academy status secondary school this year but still hope to make the transition to another in the near future.

    FE lecturers may be concerned about the challenges of working with kids of this age but it's just a case of getting into a decent school with an efficient and disciplined management structure.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    23:43
    13 December, 2011

    rovermarc

  • I have practised as support in schools primary and secondary for years after a change of career. I enjoyed qualifying for my degree but then progressed onto post compulsory teaching because I could not complete the teacher training PGCE primary (young family, work away hubby etc...) I must say the difference between the standards of teaching and learning and knowledge of education is massive! Even the teacher training was a doddle! It is too generic leaving the student to apply in their own way rather than structured tried and tested methods. Pre 16 Teacher training for mainstream education is far more robust, structured, disciplined and managed; and yes more difficult. I would go back to it now if I could - but I can't even fast track. In defence of all the excellent post 16 teachers out there - I hope my experience is not the same as others. I would also like to teach else where to be able to compare standards in FE but the job situation is ridiculous.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    13:32
    2 July, 2012

    RRocca

  • Quote from above: This just begs the question, "Why would lecturers want to???"

    Having recently gone back into secondary education after 4 years in FE, I'm now waiting for the right job to come up so I can get back to the cushy FE life!
    :)

    My response: There you go! Point proved!!!! I would not appreciate my teenage children to be taught by a lecturer with this attitude.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    13:35
    2 July, 2012

    RRocca

  • To be employed in Primary or Secondary you are trained specifically, must have a degree in a curriculum subject/s and the teacher training - usually 1 year as an additional or BEd/combined. This takes about 4 years. Working Nursery Nurses or Level 3 Support staff in schools have done the QTS (post 16) and are now Lecturers! with poor English & Maths and no idea of classroom managment, special needs, health and safety, PSE etc... at teacher training level. How could you rate these the same quality as mainstream teachers? Please don't say through age and experience.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

    13:56
    2 July, 2012

    RRocca

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