Teacher Labour Market in England Annual Report 2024

Dawson McLean, Jack Worth and Andrew Smith

20 March 2024

NFER’s annual Teacher Labour Market report, funded by the Nuffield Foundation, monitors the progress the education system in England is making towards meeting the teacher supply challenge by measuring the key indicators of teacher supply and working conditions. 

This sixth annual report shows that teacher supply is in a critical state, representing a substantial risk to the quality of education. Initial teacher training (ITT) recruitment this year is likely to continue to fall below what is needed to ensure sufficient staffing levels in schools.

Meanwhile, the number of teachers considering leaving teaching  increased 44 per cent between 2021/22 and 2022/23. Ambitious, radical and cost-effective policy options are urgently needed to address these challenges. 

Key Findings

  • Secondary ITT recruitment in 2023/24 reached only half of its target while leaving rates have returned to pre-pandemic levels.
  • ITT applications for 2024/25 so far show  slight improvement in some subjects, but not enough to bring secondary recruitment in line with its target.   
  • Working hours increased significantly in 2022/23 compared to the previous year, driven in part by worsening pupil behaviour since the pandemic.
  • Last year’s pay award helped to stall the real-terms fall in teacher pay since 2010/11. However, teacher pay growth has been outstripped by strong earnings growth since the pandemic in the wider labour market outside teaching
  • Flexible working has become  more common in teaching, but remote and hybrid working is more limited in teaching than in the graduate labour force. Compensating frontline public sector workers could help prevent the lack of remote working from undermining the attractiveness of these jobs.  

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