Coming to a school near you – unqualified teachers (parents – this is not a joke)


It is shocking to see an advertisement like this. But it is no joke. South Leeds Academy are advertising for two unqualified maths teachers.

With pay starting at £16,856 for the ‘unqualified teacher’ pay spine, you might wonder what qualifications you need to get this job. What do you think? A degree in mathematics? At least an A level perhaps? Well, you would be wrong. The person specification (that you can download from here just in case they withdraw it at any point) indicates that all you need is 4 GCSE’s A* to C equivalent (including English and Maths). Phew! Thank goodness. At least they require a teacher of Maths in their school to have a C grade at GCSE. To quote from p.9 of their recruitment pack:

The ideal candidates will possess a minimum of 4 GCSE’s (Grades A*- C) including English and Mathematics or equivalent. Experience of working in a similar role would be desirable. 

It is at this point that words begin to fail me (well, not quiet). I have been writing about the consequences of Gove’s reforms in this area for many years on this blog. At times, I have received a lot of flack from the establishment about being alarmist or too cynical.

If I was a parent of children attending this school I would be angry, in fact very angry. I would be asking what value the school places on my child’s education when such shockingly low standards are applied to the selection of teachers at their school.

I’d like to make a more general point to any parents reading this blog. Are you happy about Gove’s reforms in this area? Would you be happy with unqualified teachers, with a little as 4 GCSEs by way of qualifications, teaching your children?

Please alert me to any further advertisements like this that you see in your local area. Let’s name and shame some of these schools and get them to reconsider their choices. For me, I’m writing to the head teacher of this school this morning about this matter. I would urge you to do the same for your local schools if, or when, they start doing the same.

You can read further details about this specific case here. Thanks Secret Teacher for your highlighting of this example.


One thought on “Coming to a school near you – unqualified teachers (parents – this is not a joke)

  1. admin Post author

    A quick update on this. I note that the school have withdrawn the advertisement and the job specification from various sites. Just as well I copied it and saved the job specification here eh? Also, Gove’s SPADs have been active on Twitter trying to set the story up as if the school were only recruiting trainee teachers (but failed to mention this in their ad). Quite ridiculous in my view. Just read the job specification and make up your own mind as to whether that reads like a job a trainee teacher (or perhaps even an unqualified teacher) should be doing.


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