We recognise that increasing the number of science and mathematics teachers, particularly in some parts of the country, given the career choices available to graduates of these subjects is a challenge. We are taking a number of steps to increase their numbers further.
We are implementing a package of up to £67 million to transform mathematics and physics teaching in England. This will provide subject knowledge training to 15,000 non-specialist serving teachers and recruit up to 2,500 additional mathematics and physics teachers. The package includes programmes to encourage the brightest A level students and undergraduates into teaching; salaried part-time and abridged courses for career changers; a salaried route for post-doctoral maths and physics researchers; and support for qualified teachers wishing to return to the profession.
We have increased bursaries for science and mathematics trainee teachers; including £30,000 for physics trainees with first-class degrees. We are also offering prestigious scholarships, worth up to £30,000 for physics, and £25,000 for mathematics, chemistry and computing trainees, in partnership with the professional bodies for these subjects.
Through the School Direct route, which is specifically targeted at career changers and allows them to earn a salary whilst they train to teach, we are providing enhanced grant funding of £25,000 (up to £29,900 in inner London) to schools that pay the trainee an enhanced salary of at least £21,000 (£25,000 in inner London).
Our marketing campaign, Your Future | Their Future, includes targeted subject specific science and mathematics advertising through a range of media. Those who wish to teach secondary science or mathematics are eligible for our enhanced Premier Plus service, which provides support from a dedicated adviser to guide them through the application process. Those applicants who would benefit from it can also access funded courses to boost or refresh their subject knowledge to a level that will allow them to teach the subject.
To ensure that these teachers work in the schools where they are most needed, we have expanded school-led initial teacher training (ITT) by introducing School Direct and accrediting more school-centred initial teacher training providers. School-led ITT gives schools the leading role in responding to recruitment needs in their local area, including for science and mathematics teachers. We have also supported the growth of Teach First, a prestigious teacher training route which places trainees in some of the most deprived and challenging areas of the country. As a result of these reforms, 2015/16 is the first year in which more than half of postgraduate ITT is school-led, with 51% of trainees on a school-led route.
The National College for Teaching and Leadership has also recently changed its approach to allocating ITT places, giving individual schools and universities the freedom to recruit as many science and mathematics trainees as they need, up to the national target for each subject.
We have also recently launched the National Teaching Service (NTS). This will help schools that are finding it difficult to retain and recruit the teachers they need, such as in rural, coastal or deprived areas. We will first test aspects of the model through a pilot of 100 NTS teachers/middle leaders starting in secondary and primary schools in the North West from September 2016. Thereafter the national programme will be rolled out to other parts of the country so that by 2020 there will be 1,500 outstanding NTS teachers and middle leaders in schools that need them.