Teacher training

Teach First contract extended for another two years

The programme for the 'best and brightest' graduates has struggled with its targets amid worsening recruitment crisis

The programme for the 'best and brightest' graduates has struggled with its targets amid worsening recruitment crisis

Teach First’s contract has been extended for another two years, despite missing its targets as the teacher recruitment crisis worsens. 

The flagship teacher training provider admitted “significant recruitment challenges” last year when taking on 1,394 recruits, missing its target by a fifth. Teacher recruitment overall was 40 per cent below target.

The charity lost £2 million in bonuses with its recruitment branded “inadequate” by the Department for Education in its key performance indicator monitoring. It was rated as “good” against three other government targets.

The programme recruits the “best and brightest” graduates and career changers who could be “highly skilled teachers and leaders”. 

Teach First’s contract has now been extended until October 2027, taking the overall grants it will have received since 2021 to £169 million. But it must still recruit 1,750 trainees each year in 2024 and 2025 for the two-year courses. 

Meanwhile, a tendering exercise for the contract after 2027 has been launched.

The DfE said it was “keen to gain market insights and understand market capacity, capability and interest”.

It is also “receptive to understanding alternative and innovative solutions” outside the current delivery model. 

Prospective bidders are being asked what they think are the “main barriers to enter and operate in the market to attract, train and develop” high-flying teacher trainees with leadership capacity. 

They are also asked how attractive the existing Teach First model is. 

Teach First declined to comment. But it previously said it was “proud” of last year’s numbers “given the significant recruitment challenges the whole sector is facing”.

A new autumn institute, which it piloted last year, will re-run this year. 

The charity is also operating in a much tougher market.

A recent report from High Fliers Research found four top graduate employers offering starting salaries of more than £50,000 this year, while a quarter of the top 100 employers were offering salaries of more than £40,000.

Teacher starting salaries are currently £28,000 outside London.

Teach First has previously called for the government to offer a £5,000 recruitment bonus for teachers who work in the most deprived areas “to ensure the profession remains competitive”.

More from this theme

Teacher training

DfE ends funding for teaching school hubs sector body

Officials praise Teaching Schools Hub Council for 'careful stewardship' of hubs network as cash pulled

Samantha Booth
Teacher training

Schools promised ‘financial incentives’ to pilot new teacher apprenticeship

Government also reveals 8 trainers that will trial the new scheme from September 2025

Freddie Whittaker
Teacher training

‘Missed opportunity’ as teaching hubs lose CPD role

Teaching hubs will no longer provide continuous professional development next year

Lucas Cumiskey
Teacher training

Institute of Teaching hits target – with a little help from its friends

Recruits from founding academy trusts counted towards flagship teacher trainer's first-year figures

Lucas Cumiskey
Teacher training

Teaching hub claims DfE ‘favours larger trusts’

Three hubs lose their designation as high-profile trusts move in

Lucas Cumiskey
Teacher training

Teaching apprenticeship for non-graduates: What you need to know

Degree apprenticeship route into the profession will launch next year with a pilot for 150 maths trainees

Freddie Whittaker

Your thoughts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *