New from September 2021 – the Early Career Framework for new teachers

The Early Career Framework (ECF) begins its full national rollout in September 2021. NQTs are now called ECTs (early career teachers).  As an ECT, you will be supported as a new teacher for two years, instead of one. This means the teacher induction period in England is now two years for all teachers beginning induction from September onwards. Please see induction advice for detailed information on the ECF and how it will affect you. Teacher induction in Wales has not changed.

Advice for those who are first year ECTs in 2021-22

You will now be subject to the ECF as outlined above. The measures adopted by the DfE previously in relation to the impact of Covid-19 disruption for those on NQT induction are set out below. The NEU will seek to ensure that you are protected against suffering disadvantage due to any disruption this year in schools or to illness.

Advice for those on NQT induction in 2020-21 who are now second year ECTs in 2021-22

For 2021-22, the Government is funding schools with second year teachers who have already passed induction to support them with 5% of time off timetable each week to spend on professional development. (This cohort of teachers is not subject to the ECF and this provision falls outside of the ECF.) This is in addition to the normal 10% PPA time you and all teachers should receive.

The NEU welcomes this, having called for extra support for those who have trained and qualified during Covid-19, but the lateness of the announcement means that the arrangements are not fully satisfactory for schools, their leaders or new teachers. The 5% off timetable is not a statutory requirement, and schools do not have to accept the funding if they cannot or will not support second year teachers in this way. They can also choose to give the 5% off timetable at various times throughout the year, not on a regular weekly or fortnightly basis. This flexibility is in recognition of the complication caused by the lateness of the announcement. 

Advice for those on NQT induction in 2020-21 who have paused induction this year

Changes to statutory induction during national roll-out - GOV.UK

This relates to the ECF and covers those who might have paused induction this year. If you complete a year’s induction before 1 September 2023, you will not need to do a second year’s induction. If you haven’t completed induction by this time, you will need to complete two years’ induction (six terms) in total. For example, if you had previously completed two terms, you would need to complete a further four terms. 

Induction for newly qualified teachers during the coronavirus outbreak - GOV.UK

In a continuation of the provisions from summer 2020, Covid-related absences in the 2020-21 academic year will not automatically trigger an extension to your NQT induction period. However, if you are deemed not to be on course to meet the standards, your induction could still be extended.

Further information about the ECF is available here.

Advice for those on NQT induction in 2019-20

Covid-19 related absences must not have automatically triggered an extension of an NQT’s induction period and schools were asked to pass an NQT’s induction if they have met the teacher standards.  It is the NEU’s view that you should have been passed unless serious concerns about your ability to meet the teacher standards were already been raised with you, before schools closed in March. 

If you were not been on track to meet the standards and consequently pass induction, the Government's position is that head teachers and appropriate bodies should recommend an extension. This would give you further opportunities to demonstrate that you meet the standards. Your school should still be offering you the full package of NQT support during an extension including ten per cent enhancement on PPA time, an induction mentor and regular feedback and support. See the NEU’s publications for NQTs. 

Advice for trainee teachers on ITT courses starting from September 2021

The measures adopted by the DfE last year in relation to the impact of Covid-19 disruption are set out below.  The NEU will seek to ensure that you are similarly protected against suffering disadvantage due to any disruption this year in schools or to illness.

Advice for trainee teachers on ITT courses starting from September 2020

The DFE suspended the following for 2020-21:

  • the expectation that trainees train to teach in at least two schools;
  • the requirement for a trainee to have met the standards across the full age and ability range of training;
  • the expectation that training programmes cover no fewer than four school years;
  • the requirement for 120 days in school experience – training providers should exercise discretion as to whether the trainee has shown they meet the teacher standards.

The DfE has confirmed that ITT providers should recommend trainees for QTS where the trainee “has demonstrated adequate progress towards meeting the Teachers’ Standards during their course” and “would have met the Teachers’ Standards, were it not for disruption relating to Covid-19. ITT providers must continue to ensure ITT courses are as comprehensive as possible. Providers should only recommend trainees for QTS in this way where appropriate and necessary.”

Trainees who were not on track to meet the teacher standards should be granted a term’s extension. Schools receive finding to support this.