Teacher training

Unis piloting iQTS scheme fail teacher training re-accreditation

Three of six higher education institutions taking part in iQTS pilot did not get through in the first round of the ITT review

Three of six higher education institutions taking part in iQTS pilot did not get through in the first round of the ITT review


Half the universities piloting the new international teacher training qualification have failed the first re-accreditation round to run teacher training in their own country.

The government-backed qualification iQTS was announced as part of the International Education Strategy 2021 to help “export excellence in teacher training”. English teacher training providers will run the courses for schools abroad.

But three of the six universities chosen to run a pilot of the scheme failed their reaccreditation to continue training in England from 2024-25.

James Noble-Rogers, the executive director of the Universities Council for the Education of Teachers (UCET), said it was “somewhat perplexing” that providers “judged to be good enough to deliver” the iQTS “appear not to be seen by the Department for Education to be OK to run teacher training in this country”.

“These are just a number of examples of where the Qualified Teacher Status accreditation process seems to be flawed.”

Only 80 of 215 providers that applied for reaccreditation to continue teaching in England were successful in round one. Rejected organisations, which have a second chance to gain accreditation, told Schools Week they were treated “disgracefully”.

Unis reapplying for teacher training accreditation

The Universities of Warwick, Birmingham and Sunderland are all reapplying in the second round, which closes this month.

A Warwick spokesperson said it was “in a strong position” to be approved.

Birmingham, also a specialist partner in the new National Institute of Teaching, said it was “frustrating”, but it was “confident of securing accreditation in the next round”. Sunderland did not comment.

Other pilot organisations Sheffield Hallam University and the University of Derby were approved. Canterbury Christ Church University did not confirm its status.

The pilot will run from September. Applications will open next month to find an expected ten providers to run a wider roll-out in 2023-24.

Only ‘good’ and ‘outstanding’ providers can apply. Accredited providers who have not been inspected are also barred.

Meanwhile, the DfE announced that teachers from across the globe would be able to attain QTS under plans to increase the pool of staff available for English schools.

From 2023 a new professional recognition service called “apply for qualified teacher status in England” will judge candidates against a consistent set of standards.

The current system only recognises teachers from a list of 39 countries, including across Europe, the United States and Australia.

The changes allow teachers from countries not on the list to gain QTS here without retraining.

More from this theme

Teacher training

School teacher trainers reveal ITTECF mentor workload doubts

ITT providers lack confidence government will achieve key targets through its new teacher training framework, survey suggests

Lucas Cumiskey
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

Your thoughts

Leave a Reply

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


  1. Tom Clock End

    Not enough teachers due to over work, low pay, limited resources and constant criticism? No worries, just get any Tom Dick or Harriet from abroad, with or without the required standard of qualifications and experience, and problem solved.

  2. Dotti

    Where to start . I have Ma Hons in early school education and Ba Hons in English language and literature . Practised for 20 year in my native European country .I did manage to obtaiN U.K. QTS last year . So …. The point of my comment is don’t be delusional if you think you will get a job in U.K. school .despite my achievements and outstanding practice I heard every time that I don’t have U.K. experience or have I ever taught phonics . And that QTS is just a number and I was not born in this country neither educated!. Interestingly the Pedagogy comes from one place ….theorists or methods . Ifelt humiliated .thought about writing to Kate burley sky news to start debate on Minister of Education .
    I was thinking to just write or discuss of a reality of being employed in U.K. schools .
    I hope ,I really hope that future candidates won’t be deceived otherwise they will end up going back to their own country .
    So hopefully new regulation won’t materialise .
    Curiously enough few years back if I would like to Canada or Australia to teach with accommodation provided . I have many friends in Australia who moved 20 , 30 years ago from my own country to teach in Australia with no problem ..
    The problem for me is I love living here , married to wonderful British man anf our life is here .
    So upon the reflection QTS won’t solve the staff shortages problem , because the reality is all headteachers want U.K. educated practitioners .