Universities feel the squeeze as teacher training places fall

The university sector has lost a tenth of its secondary-level initial teacher training places for 2012-13, government allocations reveal.

December 24, 2011

Statistics from the Training and Development Agency for Schools show that the sector has lost 10.39 per cent of its places at secondary level, a decline of 1,263 places in total.

An analysis by Times Higher Education in February of the TDA data showed that cuts to initial teacher training provision already implemented for the 2011-12 academic year had disproportionately affected higher education institutions; the total number of secondary school teacher-training places had been cut by 14 per cent for the last academic year, however for university providers this figure rose to per cent.

The sector fared slightly better in the allocation of primary teacher training places, with a rise of 6.53 per cent across the sector.

However, the loss of places at the secondary level means that the sector saw a slight dip of around 1 per cent in the number of places allocated overall.

The two institutions suffering the biggest losses are the University of Bedfordshire, which has lost 96 places and the University of Southampton, which has lost 95 places.

Even with the increase in the number of primary school training places allocated across the sector over the last two years, the data show that the total number of places allocated to higher education providers has declined by 13.62 per cent since 2009-10.

A spokeswoman for the TDA said that the numbers should be viewed as a “snapshot” rather than a final representation of the number of students who will be studying on initial teacher training courses in the 2012-13 academic year.

“The 2011-12 numbers have changed significantly in the months since February and 2012-13 numbers will also change as it becomes apparent how we will treat school-led provision, much of which has not yet been allocated. Ultimately this will affect allocations for all providers,” she said.

sarah.cunnane@tsleducation.com

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