Council staff can retratin as teachers

Dumfries and Galloway Council has received the go-ahead to introduce a unique scheme offering existing education staff the opportunity to retrain as teachers.

We recently reported on the scheme, which has recently received the backing of the Scottish Government.

It aims to provide qualified teachers to fill vacancies in the region where it has formerly been hard to recruit teachers.

Like many rural councils, Dumfries and Galloway finds it difficult to recruit and retain enough teachers in some areas. It is a particular problem recruiting primary school teachers in the west of the region.

The ‘Grow Your Own Teachers’ initiative offers existing employees of the council’s Education Service who already have a degree the chance to study locally for a post graduate certificate of education while still being employed by the council.

Ten additional places will be available at the University of the West of Scotland’s Ayr campus in academic year 2015/16.

Councillor Jeff Leaver, Chairman of the Education committee, wrote to the Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for Education, Angela Constance MSP, seeking her support for the Council’s “Grow Your Own Teachers” initiative.

Mr Leaver said: “This unique programme offers graduate employees in our Education Services the opportunity to retrain as teachers while earning a wage.

The aim is to provide qualified primary teachers to fill vacancies in parts of the region where it has often been hard to recruit and retain teachers.

“As the successful applicants already live and work in our region, they’re more likely to stay here during their teaching careers.

“A lot of hard work has gone into developing this scheme and I’d like to commend education officers who have worked extremely hard and successfully achieved the outcome we sought.”