Edge Hill is joining the Teacher Training Agency (TTA) in appealing to dads to bring their untapped talents to the classroom and consider a career in teaching.

New research, published by the TTA, shows that 84 per cent of graduate dads have been prompted to reconsider their priorities after having children. A quarter have already changed their job so they can enjoy more quality family time.

As one of the largest providers of Initial Teacher Training in the country Edge Hill is keen to encourage people who are under represented in the profession, such as men in primary teaching, to take up training opportunities.

Nigel Smallwood, aged 38 of Tarleton is in the third year of study at Edge Hill to become a primary teacher. The father of two boys aged nine and six he has no regrets about leaving a career in the printing industry to take up the BA (Hons) with QTS* in Primary Education and Maths.

“I had always wanted to become a teacher but found myself taking a creative route in the printing industry instead. I was originally inspired by my own junior school teacher and being a parent has certainly given me more confidence in engaging and motivating young children. It?s very fulfilling to know that you are making a difference to people?s lives.”

TTA research found that almost a third of dads (29 per cent) claim parenthood has made them more likely to consider becoming a teacher with more than half of these (55 per cent) acknowledging that they have a renewed respect for teachers now they are parents.

Working with young people is a significant lure for dads with 75 per cent saying they would find seeing a young person’s knowledge develop an enjoyable aspect of teaching. Three quarters would be attracted to teaching by being able to spend school holidays with their families, 54 per cent to the flexibility of school working hours and 54 per cent to the intellectual challenge of the job.

Mike Watkins, Acting Director of Teacher Supply and Recruitment for the TTA said: “Primary school teachers need to be able to communicate in ways which engage, enthuse and motivate young children. This research suggests that becoming a dad has given many male graduates more experience and confidence in these skills.

“Attractive pay, benefits and leadership opportunities – and the chance to work with young people – has attracted ever increasing numbers of men to train as primary teachers in recent years. However, even more men are needed and we are actively encouraging interested fathers with degrees to apply for teacher training places. What many men don’t realise in time is that competition for places is high and applications to train next September need to be in by 1st December.”

EDITOR?S NOTES: For further press information about Edge Hill please contact:
Roisin Rowley-Smith
PR Manager
Tel: 01695 584509
Fax: 01695 584355
E mail: rowlesr@edgehill.ac.uk or pressoffice@edgehill.ac.uk

* The recommendation for the award of QTS is dependent upon the successful completion of an induction year in teaching. This DfES requirement applies to ITT programmes at any institution.

All graduates interested in primary teacher training should visit www.teach.gov.uk or call the Teaching Information Line on 0845 6000 991 (-992 for Welsh speakers) to find out more.

Applications for most postgraduate initial teacher training courses are processed through the Graduate Teacher Training Registry and can be submitted online at www.gttr.ac.uk.

The research was carried out by PCP data (September – October 2004) and is based on a sample of 1125 graduate dads with children aged 3-16 years old.

A newly qualified teacher (NQT) can expect to start on a salary of at least £18,558 (£22,059 in inner London). The pay scale for good, experienced classroom teachers who have ‘crossed the threshold’ rises to £29,385 outside London and £34,851 in inner London. Additional allowances may be paid to teachers considered to be excellent, and to those who take on management and other responsibilities. The pay scale for headteachers can rise to over £90,000 depending on size of school.

Eligible trainees on postgraduate initial teacher training courses in England are entitled to a tax-free training bursary worth £6,000 (from September 2005 the amount is £7,000 for maths and science trainees)

Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs) with a PGCE in a priority subject (mathematics, science, modern languages, English or drama, design and technology, and Information and Communications Technology) may also be eligible for a “golden hello” payment worth £4,000 (taxable) after successfully completing their induction period. (From September 2005, the payment is £5,000 for maths and science teachers.) Details are available on the TTA website at: http://www.useyourheadteach.gov.uk.