By the end of February the recruitment site TeachVac www.teachvac.co.uk had recorded just over 4,000 vacancies for secondary classroom teachers since the 1st January 2015, including more than 1,500 during February despite the half-term holiday period.
These are vacancies suitable for trainees, returners and those moving schools, but not seeking promotion. As the DfE have a rule of thumb that 50% of these vacancies go to trainees, this means that around 2,000 trainees may have found a job by now. As there were around 13,000 trainees at the time of the ITT census in November that probably leaves just over 10,000 left in the pool after allowing for those that won’t complete the training year.
As I have suggested from last autumn, not all subjects are faring the same. The trainee pool was probably down to below two thirds by the end of February in English, business studies, design and technology, social studies and computer science. Next week, mathematics, history, geography and the sciences as a whole will probably join the list. Business studies may fall below 50% left in the pool and next week, and there have already been more vacancies recorded in the South West than there are trainees in that subject.
With the bumper recruitment months or March, and especially April still to come, I expect some schools to face recruitment challenges in these subjects.
On the other hand, PE, music and art have seen relatively few vacancies so far this year and in PE some trainees may struggle to find a post, especially if they are not especially interested in vacancies across a wide geographical area.
London and the counties around the capital have so far seen the largest percentage of vacancies relative to the number of schools in the regions even though Teach First is active in London. By contrast, the North West has seen comparatively few vacancies posted by schools so far this year.
TeachVac is free for both schools and trainees to use and offers a range of data analysis to anyone interested in the labour market for teachers in England on a real-time basis.
TeachVac will soon be expanded to allow registration by returners and teachers moving between schools as well as adding promoted posts to the vacancies on offer. However, it will remain free to both schools and teachers allowing substantial savings over other recruitment routes. The video demos on the TeachVac site show both schools and teachers how to operate the TeachVac system. All that is necessary for schools is to know the difference between their URN and their DfE number when they register.
In return, schools that register vacancies receive a real-time update on the state of the market in that subject where it is one of the main curriculum subjects tracked by TeachVac.
If you know of a trainee or teacher looking for a teaching post in England, whether in the state or private sectors, or a school wanting to post a vacancy for free, do point them to www.teachvac.co.uk