So we seem to be facing a shortage of teachers again. This has happened roughly every ten years since the Pyramids were built, usually because either:
1) The economy is booming, or
2) There has been lots of bad publicity about pay and conditions in teaching.
As always, the problem is most acute in the important subjects (A shortage of Drama Teachers would simply be cause for celebration).
Anyway, the Government has brought in a new program called 'Schools Direct' where you train at a school and get paid. Sounds like a good idea. However it's only accepted about half as many trainee teachers as hoped because:
1) Not enough schools have agreed to provide the training, either on ideological grounds or because they aren't being paid enough.
2) Nobody thought to advertise it.
3) Maybe, as with all targets, the numbers were a bit arbitrary anyway.
Heads of participating schools haven't been too impressed by some of the candidates they've received. This isn't surprising when you bear in mind that all the new comedy Universities are churning out hundreds of tonnes of dross each year.
'Half of Teacher Training places unfilled' makes a good headline, but the publicity it generates will be enough to boost the numbers by the time the courses start- you mark my words. (Just don't mark the applicants' words).