An initiative to attract experienced industry professionals to teach in further education is to receive £5 million from the Department for Education (DfE).
The Taking Teaching Further programme will cover the costs of teacher training courses, plus support and mentoring, for up to 150 professionals who want to switch to teaching from sectors such as engineering and computing.
Delivered by the Education and Training Foundation on behalf of the DfE, the scheme will also fund 40 projects intended to develop local partnerships and collaborations aimed at supporting an ongoing exchange between industry and further education.
With the first T-Levels starting in 2020, Taking Teaching Further is being heralded as an important step towards ensuring that the further education sector can provide students with expert and talented teachers.
Announcing the move, Apprenticeships and Skills Minister Anne Milton said that attracting the best of industry into will help students gain the knowledge and skills that industry really needs.
Describing its advent as “timely” the Chief Executive of the Foundation, David Russell, said the programme will bring in rich new talent and expertise, improving learner outcomes and supporting the development of the existing workforce.
For the Association of Colleges, Alison Birkin Shaw said it is absolutely crucial that colleges recruit, retain and continually develop lecturers and other staff so that they are up to date with their skills – particularly those working in shortage specialisms.
“This programme is a well-timed and exciting way to support individuals from industry who now want to teach the skills they have learned,” she concluded.