Where are all the teachers? Nine out of 17 subjects on track to significantly under-recruit

Teacher vacancies are 93% up on pre-Covid levels while initial teacher training targets are once again set to be missed significantly in nine out of 17 secondary subject areas.

The latest analysis of the teacher workforce in England by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) warns that, based on applications as of February 2023, nine subjects will be 20% or more below target for the 2023/24 academic year.

These subjects are: physics, computing, design and technology, business studies, modern foreign languages, religious education, music, drama, and art and design.

Other subjects such as maths, English, chemistry and geography are also at risk of under-recruiting this year, while biology, history, classics and PE are likely to be at, or slightly above, target.

The annual Teacher labour market in England report (McLean et al, 2023) also finds that primary phase initial teacher training targets are on course to be missed for 2023/24.

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