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Train to Teach

The golden thread of teacher development

Teachers are the foundation of the education system – there are no great schools without great teachers. The quality of teaching is the single most important in-school factor for improving pupil outcomes – and it is particularly important for pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Delivering on the commitments set out in the Teacher Recruitment and Retention Strategy, the Department for Education (DfE) is creating a world-class teacher development system by transforming the training and support teachers and school leaders receive at every stage of their career. Each stage – initial teacher training, early career support, specialisation and leadership – is underpinned by frameworks that build on and complement one another. The frameworks have been independently reviewed by the Education Endowment Foundation to ensure they draw on the best available evidence.

The frameworks are translated into curricula by a national professional development infrastructure made up of lead providers and delivery partners, responsible for designing and delivering training to schools. At the heart of this infrastructure are Teaching School Hubs, school-led centres of excellence for professional development. This infrastructure is inspected by Ofsted to ensure it is of the highest quality. Together, these reforms help teachers and school leaders in every phase, subject and context feel more confident and in control of their careers. They have established strong professional development cultures both within individual schools and across the country, elevating the quality of teaching and ultimately improving pupil outcomes.

Teachers are made, not born. Great teachers continuously improve over time, benefiting from the mentoring of expert colleagues and a structured introduction to the core body of knowledge, skills and behaviours that define great teaching. All new entrants to the profession will benefit from initial teacher training (ITT) courses that incorporate the content of the new ITT Core Content Framework, published in September 2020, which sets out what ITT providers and their partnerships must draw upon when designing and delivering their programmes. 

The core business of a Teaching School Hub is to deliver the government’s ‘golden thread of teacher development’ – three year training and induction programme – bound together by a common framework (core content and early career frameworks) followed by movement into National Professional Qualifications (including some exciting new specialist offers):