Gathering views on probationer teachers' readiness to teach

The broad aim of the project is to explore the views and perceptions of whether probationer teachers are ready to teach.



Policy reform of Initial Teacher Education ( ITE) was premised on the recommendation from the report Teaching Scotland's Future (Scottish Government, 2010). These reforms to the content and delivery of ITE programmes focus on developing newly qualified teachers who are ready to deliver high quality teaching and learning experiences for all pupils and are personally committed to being life-long learners.

The National Improvement Framework's, Teacher Professionalism driver, outlines the data gathering required to be undertaken to provide insights into ITE programmes. The Content Analysis published in May 2017, reported on data provided by the University ITE providers as to the number of hours dedicated to each key area. The Content Analysis alongside this report provide evidence to understand how student teachers are being prepared to teach literacy and numeracy, support children's health and wellbeing, use data to inform progress and teacher judgment, and ensure equality across the education system.

This was defined in the Action Plan as deliverable 1.

Deliverable 1

Publish information on the range of literacy, numeracy, health and wellbeing, data literacy and social justice coverage in initial teacher education programmes.

This evidence provided by the Content Analysis report is supported through this report which addresses deliverable 2.

Deliverable 2

Publish data on the views of newly qualified teachers, schools and local authorities on how well prepared newly qualified teachers are to teach literacy and numeracy, support children's health and wellbeing, use data effectively to enhance learning and teaching, and ensure equality.

Through these two deliverables, data from ITE providers and perceptions of ITE from the probationer teachers, probationer supporters and local authority probation managers Scottish Government and their stakeholders will develop a fuller understanding of the quality of the learning experiences of graduate teachers and their readiness to support all children and young people.

Teacher Induction Scheme

The Teacher Induction Scheme ( TIS) provides a guaranteed one-year placement in a local authority to every eligible student graduating with a teaching qualification from one of Scotland's ITE providers. GTC Scotland, in partnership with the Scottish Government, is responsible for the administration of the scheme. The TIS is not compulsory; graduating student teachers can also choose the Flexible Route to full registration. Successful completion of the TIS allows probationer teachers to be considered for full registration within one school year (190 teaching days) compared with the flexible route where student teachers find their own placement(s) and are considered eligible for full registration after either 190 days (full teaching days) of continuous service in one establishment or 270 full teaching days across a number of establishments.
Most (approximately 90%) graduating student teachers opt for the TIS. The benefits of this scheme include the following:

  • a maximum class contact time of 0.8 full time equivalent ( GTC Scotland endorsed)
  • dedicated time set aside for professional learning
  • access to a teacher for support throughout the induction year.

To become a fully registered teacher in Scotland, student teachers are required to meet the Standard for Full Registration ( SFR). The SFR sets out the professional values, knowledge and skills expected of a probationer teacher during their induction year and provides a professional standard against which decisions can be made on the granting of full registration. Probationer teachers are supported to achieve this through working collaboratively with their supporter, with whom they meet regularly. Their supporter also undertakes observations and contributes to the probationer teacher's interim and final profile.

Probationer teachers are required to go through an intense period of professional learning during their TIS placement which often includes:

  • core experiences organised by the local authority
  • individual professional learning needs identified during ITE
  • practitioner enquiry
  • leading staff development for others
  • developing school policies and reports
  • visiting other schools or establishments
  • working with pupils outwith normal contact time.


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