EFFORTS to recruit more teachers in Bradford – and prevent existing teachers from leaving their jobs – will be discussed by councillors on Wednesday.
They will be told that while there is still an issue with teachers, particularly young teachers, leaving the profession, a number of schemes have been set up to bring more teachers into local schools.
Bradford Council’s Children’s Services Scrutiny Committee will receive the report on the recruitment and retention of teachers in the Bradford district at its next meeting.
The report says the shortage of teachers is a “continuing challenge” for the education sector in England, and there were still pressures in Bradford. But it says the efforts to get more people teaching in Bradford have inspired other local authorities.
The report calls for more to be done at Government level to tackle teacher recruitment, saying: “Although the Government recognises that there are issues, it has been unable to address them and consistently fails to meet recruitment targets. We would like to see a long-term, evidence-based plan for how investment will tackle challenges associated with the supply of teachers.”
Recent schemes to recruit more teachers are highlighted in the report, including groundbreaking bus tours, which take hundreds of trainee teachers on tours around a selection of the district’s schools. The tours garnered national attention, being featured in the Times Educational Supplement and the BBC.
Also referenced is the recently-launched Teach Bradford campaign, which uses teachers as “ambassadors” to encourage more people to get into the profession, and Get Into Teaching, a recruitment push involving targeted advertising.
And a ‘talent bank’ sees experienced head teachers interview potential teachers who are then ‘marketed’ to schools using a database.
The report said that in 2015-16, 61 per cent of Bradford schools reported facing recruitment issues. But the talent bank has since helped to reduce the percentage of schools reporting recruitment issues in nursery and primary from 58 per cent to 32 per cent.
The report says: “Bradford children need the best teachers; therefore, Bradford teachers need to be valued and developed to be the best they can be.”
The committee meets at City Hall at 4.30pm on Wednesday.