Education bucking the trend of public sector recruitment, says TLTP Education
That’s the view of TLTP Education, one of the leading specialist education recruitment companies, which recorded a 200% year on year increase in permanent education placements in September. The company also reported a 45% increase in its temporary and interim business across both the education and healthcare sectors.
The company was commenting after news from the Office of National Statistics that public sector employment fell by a further 11,000 to 5.39 million in the second quarter of 2014 to hit the lowest level recorded since records began in 1999. The drop included 3,000 jobs in education. This was followed by comments from theoutgoing head of the civil service, Sir Bob Kerslake, predicting another five years of UK government spending cuts, suggesting the situation is unlikely to change any time soon.
Darryl Mydat, managing director of TLTP, says that the challenge for his company as a recruiter is not the vacancies but finding candidates of a sufficient quality and experience to fill them.
“It is very easy to jump on these statistics and portray a picture of gloom and despondency,” explains Mydat, “but the situation isn’t as one dimensional as that. There is an appetite for recruiting teachers into permanent positions in schools but there is a skills and experience shortage that makes this a challenge. Too many UK teachers are looking overseas for jobs or away from teaching completely as they feel that changing OFSTED criteria, the new curriculum and the ever-changing teaching landscape mean it is a less secure and less rewarding career than it has been for many years.
Mydat says that another emerging trend is the number of teachers from across the EU who are looking for teaching posts in the UK because, as EU citizens, they automatically have QTS status. However, says Mydat, the status may not necessarily make them a desirable hire.
“We have some reluctance from schools to hire EU teachers with QTS status if their language skills may make communication difficult, if their understanding of the curriculum isn’t all that it might be and if they are going to struggle to control a class. We are finding that we are recommending many to take voluntary or TA roles as a way of acclimatising with the school system here. We also have a number of American-trained teachers looking for roles but they need to go through the process of QTS accreditation.”
Mydat adds that this situation makes it very much a candidate-led market at the moment.
“There is a skills shortage not only in the core subjects like Maths, Science and English but also in ICT and design and technology. If we can find a way of attracting former teachers back to the profession and smoothing the way for UK teachers to get their QTS accreditation, then there are jobs out there to be filled.”
Founded in 2006, TLTP Group is a privately owned recruitment consultancy specialising in the supply of professionals to both the public and private sectors worldwide. At the heart of TLTP’s role as a vendor manager is the guarantee to provide people who are unquestionably fit for purpose. At the same time it ensures that its workforce is placed on assignments to which they are suited as individuals, where they are happy and content – assignments which suit their personal agendas and circumstances, where their contribution isappreciated, where they can provide the vital services for which they were trained and where they can further develop their skill-sets.