Weak students ‘barred from new teacher training courses’

Oct 26, 2013 by

Rising numbers of prospective teachers are being barred from the classroom following a significant toughening up of training courses, it emerged today.

Figures show that the failure rate for students applying to training courses has soared six-fold after the introduction of rigorous new literacy and numeracy requirements.

Previously, just two per cent of students failed to pass basic skills tests – a necessary part of the training course – but this number jumped to 12 per cent this year.

It follows a raising of the test pass mark and a clampdown on the number of times that students can resit following claims from ministers that the system was “too easy”.

Under the last Government, would-be teachers could sit skills tests unlimited times.

In 2011/12, 1,050 candidates unsuccessfully sat the numeracy test at least five times, while 270 failed the literacy test on five occasions.

Remarkably, 20 students failed to pass both tests on at least 20 occasions in just 12 months.

Today, the Department for Education said an overhaul of the training process was “raising standards in schools”.

“The robust changes to the skills tests have had the desired effect, raising the bar for entry into teacher training and ensuring that high-quality graduates are entering the profession,” a spokeswoman said.

“We will continue to evaluate the skills tests to make sure even more brilliant teachers are entering the classroom.”

New rules surrounding teacher training were introduced in September 2012.

Previously, teachers sat literacy and numeracy tests during the one-year training course, but under the new system candidates must pass before they are accepted onto the process.

The pass mark is also higher and candidates are limited to just two resits. Those failing to pass after two attempts cannot reapply for training courses for at least two years.

In 2011/12, 35,724 trainees took the tests and 98 per cent passed. The remaining two per cent are believed to have dropped out of the process.

In 2012/13, some 44,069 were tested as part of the new “pre-course” test and 88 per cent passed. It emerged that 2.7 per cent failed three times – barring them from the process for another two years – and the remaining nine per cent dropped out.

via Weak students ‘barred from new teacher training courses’ – Telegraph.

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