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Why fight fire with fire?

Discussion in 'Education news' started by ah3069, Feb 12, 2016.

  1. ah3069

    ah3069 Occasional commenter

    This must be a topic that has been mentioned again and again, but I think it's an example of today's ludicrous society.

    Schools everywhere are having budget cuts, redundancies and 'streamlining' of staff, but on the other hand the government is paying out up to £30,000 per trainee teacher.

    I know that there is a teacher shortage, but surely they're fighting fire with fire. At one end they are splashing the cash, and at the other snatching it back.

    Would there be so much of a shortage if there were more support staff to help with tasks to take the pressure off of teachers and allow them to focus on what they are there to do? If teachers had more job security, less stress from the accompaniments of modern day teaching and were allowed to just get on with what they joined the profession to do, would this help to stem the exodus?

    At the other end the money that they are spending is vast for recruitment, there is no guarantee that these individuals will stay in teaching for longer than the year that their tax free bursary lasts for. £30,000 is a lot of money, about £45,000 equivalent if they were to be earning a taxable wage, will these people really want to take such a pay cut for their NQT year (On average about £10,000) and continue with the profession? I've heard of people doing a PGCE in a subject that has a higher bursary and then ending up teaching another subject afterwards, are these the sort of people that should be attracted to the profession, money hungry? Surely if you are attracted to teaching, you don't need to receive a cash handout, surely if you were set on teaching, you would train regardless of the money. I realise that this will help to cover tuition fee's, living costs, etc., but for the majority of trainees, this isn't essential, drop the tuition fees, £21,000 saving there! The guardian estimated this cost at £700 million a year.

    I realise that wouldn't solve the problem, as if there are 24,000 schools in England, it is only about £30,000 for each school a year, but it is a start, albeit a small start.

    I'm not claiming to be in an experienced position, I am indeed one of those who have taken a bursary, but surely the government could spend that money more wisely. Being completely truthful, I would not have turned down my place on the course if there had been no bursary. I would rather there not be the cuts, the lack of job security, and the lack of morale in the career that i intend to spend the next 40 odd years in.

    Please feel free to correct me if you feel i'm wrong on this, it's just an observation, my opinion.
     
  2. indusant

    indusant Senior commenter

    Yes, indeed. It won't help with the problem of retaining teachers. Some will stick it for the bursary, then make a swift exit. More will be off when the harsh reality of teaching hits. Why suffer if you're still young enough to go and do something else?

    Throwing money at the problem may provide a quick fix, and make some statistics look good along the way. But it will not reach the heart of the issue - the soul crushing workload and working conditions. This is why people are leaving and the government now have to dangle such a large carrot to get people to join. Along with broadcasting those fantastical teaching adverts. If something looks too good to be true, it probably is. And it definitely is.

    Those in power have no interest in taking on the real issues. It will take real commitment and courage to tackle these now. Money is not the answer. It's like trying to solve the problem of the leaky bucket by getting a bigger bucket with more holes in it. It's plain to see that it won't work in the long run. Not when the workload continues to increase and working conditions continue to deteriorate. Unless these improve, people will continue to leave.
     
  3. applecrumblebumble

    applecrumblebumble Lead commenter

    All I know if a young teacher comes along with a good degree in a shortage subject and someone is offering me £30000 no strings attached to train to teach - erh hell yes show me the money, I can put up with this for a year, or two (if I have some morals). I can say anything at the interview stage!
    This is typical government short termism, expecting to solve a problem with money, while starving the budgets of schools to pay 43 million pounds to pay for this.
     
  4. maggieDD

    maggieDD New commenter

    "Would there be so much of a shortage if there were more support staff to help with tasks to take the pressure off of teachers and allow them to focus on what they are there to do? If teachers had more job security, less stress from the accompaniments of modern day teaching and were allowed to just get on with what they joined the profession to do, would this help to stem the exodus?"

    You'd think, wouldn't you? But I have been told that a local trust is making three quarters of their support staff redundant. As you can imagine, TAs, teachers and parents are up in arms about this.

    What I want to know is, what are the Tory's real intentions given that they are fully aware of the impact this will have on teachers' workload?
     

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