Promoting Quality in Teacher Education

UCET Christmas Newsletter 2022

12 December 2022


The results of round 2 of the Market Review accreditation process were announced by DfE on 29 September. Some 83% of HEI applications were successful in either rounds 1 and 2. Although that is a better result than had at one time been feared, it led to 13 UCET member institutions not being accredited. Many of the applications were reviewed by several independent observers who felt they had met the accreditation criteria'.

A copy of the statement issued by UCET on the day of the announcement can be found at: News: UCET's statement on the outcomes of Round 1, Stage 2 of the Market Review | UCET has been supporting those non-accredited providers choosing to appeal against the accreditation decisions, facilitating meetings and advising on the content and structure of appeals. We also held a meeting with the UCET members concerned and a firm of solicitors to discuss legal options should appeals not be successful. We then wrote to the then Secretary of Stage requesting greater flexibility over the appeals process. A copy of the letter can be found at: Letter to Rt. Hon. Kit Malthouse, MP: Market Review appeals' process | UCET and the ministerial response at: Jonathan Guillis response: the Market Review and appeals' process | UCET In the event, none of the appeals were successful. Meetings about the MR are of course ongoing, and have included the Shadow Minister for Schools, a representative of the Lib Dem education spokesperson, DfE officials and ministers and one-to-one briefings with individual UCET member institutions.

DfE guidance on Stage 2 of the accreditation process was published on 21 November and can be found at: Initial teacher training (ITT): provider guidance on stage 2 - GOV.UK ( UCET has collated a set of questions and comments on the guidance which it is discussing with DfE. A series of workshops will be held to support members through the Stage 2 process and will cover: curriculum materials (6 February); mentoring (7th February); ITAP (23 February); and partnerships (2 March). This follows a successful and well-attended ITE secondary forum symposium held shortly after the announcement. Other relevant activities include the formation of a group to consider how the sector might continue to reflect the principles set out in the IBTE report in teacher education programmes from 2024/25 onwards.

DfE guidance on the development of new ITE partnerships and associated funding which might potentially involve non-accredited HEIs working as delivery partners pending the opening of a new accreditation window, was published in December and

Initial teacher training reform partnership grant - GOV.UK (

The partnership guidance states that there is no prescribed model or size of partnerships, although accountability will rest entirely with the accredited body. School Direct fee-paying programmes will cease from September 2024, although there should be scope for SD lead schools to continue to play a leading role in recruitment and programme design under the new structures. School Direct salaried will also come to an end, with a new version of the apprenticeship programme becoming the only salaried route into teaching.

Details of recruitment to ITE programmes in 2022/23 was published on 1 December and can be found at: Only 50% of secondary postgraduate targets were met, and just 93% of primary postgraduate targets were met.

Members of the UCET CPD forum have published a new paper. ‘Golden Thread or Gilded Cage’ which, amongst other things, identifies important aspects of teachers’ professional development needs that are not being met through either the ECF or NPQs. We are very grateful to CPD forum Chair Paul Vare and his colleagues for taking this work forward. A copy of the report, which we will disseminate widely, can be found at: Golden Thread or Gilded Cage? CPD position paper (November 2022) | UCET

The key issues in regards to ITE for the FE & skills sector are the: forthcoming DfE paper on quality in ITE, and the linked expansion of the OfSTED remit to encompass all ITE provision in the sector and not only that delivered through HEIs; the new teaching apprenticeship for the sector, based on new occupational standards; and the introduction from September 2024 of a new Diploma in Teaching (FE & Skills) which will become the only publicly fundable teaching qualification for the sector. Key features of the Diploma include a greater entitlement for trainees in regards to varied placement experiences, and professional and pastoral mentoring support, and a focus on what it means to be and behave as a teacher as a professional. Further details of the new qualification can be found at: Post-16 Forum: 21 October 2022 | UCET

UCET is updating its guidance on DBS and child protection issues, and any suggestions about what it should cover should be sent to Jackie Moses who is leading on the project. In response to a general enquiry from UCET, DfE has recently informed us of the following changes to child protection requirements: ITE tutors visiting schools are expected to have appropriate checks such as DBS, whereas previous guidance was that they did not need to be checked, provided they were at all times accompanied by someone who had been checked. However, subsequent clarification emphasised the reference to ‘appropriate’, and it was confirmed that in many, and possibly most, cases visiting tutors would not be engaged in any regulated activity and so would not need to be checked. It was also confirmed that schools are within their rights to request copies of DBS forms from student teachers. Another KCSIE issue relates to carrying out on-line checks of an applicant’s social media histories and presence. This is suggested in KCSIE guidance for the appointment of salaried staff, but it is another matter whether it would be appropriate for student teachers. The following statement has been suggested as an alternative approach:

‘We work with our beginning teachers to support them to understand their online presence and what is/is not appropriate in the context of a professional teacher. This includes tasks which take place in the induction phase of the course. Where there are incidents or issues that have happened in a student’s life, which are publicly available online, we explore these with the student and agree an appropriate way forward’

Other KCSIE clarifications include on-line interviews of students are permissible as long as the provider has a documented rationale for not carrying out interviews face to face; and it is advised that at least one member of recruitment panels have had safer recruitment training, such as that offered by NSPCC.

Most UCET meetings, reflecting the stated preferences of the membership, are continuing to take place on-line, although both the CPD and Research & International forums have had some face-to-face meetings. We were delighted that REF Education sub-panel chair David James was able to present on the REF outcomes at the September meeting of the R&I forum in London. Another event that took place in person was of course the 1-2 November UCET conference in Stratford upon Avon. After two successful on-line conferences it was great for everyone to meet up again and reflect on the huge amount that has happened since we last met, not least Covid 19 and the Market Review. Feedback on the conference was positive and we are extremely grateful to all those who attended, led workshops and symposia and especially to our keynote speakers: Mick Waters & Tim Brighouse; Gayle Gorman; Stefanie Sullivan; Alison Peacock; and James Williams. And, not forgetting, Sir Rod Stewart! Copies of the keynote presentations and other conference material can be found at:

The UCET Equalities sub-group has been operating for two years and reports to the UCET Research and International Committee. It is chaired by Professor Vini Lander and now has a strong core of regular attendees from a range of universities.

The group was established to:

1. identify and monitor inequalities across the sector;

2. identify policy and practices which establish and perpetuate inequalities;

3. initiate and lead improvements to address inequalities within ITE.

The work of the group in the last two years has encompassed the following initiatives/projects:

1. The Anti-racism Framework for ITE/T

This framework was developed through a research project commissioned by the NEU and supported by internal funding from Newcastle University. The project was led by Professor Heather J Smith (PI, Newcastle University) and Professor Vini Lander (Co-I, Leeds Beckett University) with research support provided by Marsha Garratt. The research project undertook a global literature review into anti-racism in teacher education which informed the development of a survey open to all initial teacher education providers in England. The survey was shared via UCET and NASBTT to capture all University and school centred providers. We worked with partners (Centre of Race Education and Decoloniality; Show Racism the Red Card; Universities of Sanctuary; BAME Ed Network; NEU; NALDIC) as consultors, co-producers and disseminators. The framework was devised in light of the findings of the global literature review and survey analysis.

SAVE THE DATE: Anti-racism ITE/T Framework Conference 29th March 2023 Leeds Beckett University. Please join us to find out more about the Framework and how different providers and teacher educators have implemented it in their curricula and pedagogy.

The Framework, the global literature review and the survey findings can be accessed via this link:

Colleagues in all ITE/T providers are encouraged to read the research findings, to engage with the Framework and embed it within their ITE/T programmes.

2. Student/Trainee Teacher and Teacher Census

The Equalities Subgroup of UCET has been working on a census to build a picture of the demographics of teachers in the system across England. The reason for collecting this is to develop a transparent understanding of who is undertaking courses, then going on to teaching and the positions they hold in schools. This is to identify if there is underrepresentation so that, as a sector, we can target our response in an informed manner to ensure that we have a teaching community that is representative of our communities. The plan is to do the following:

Phase 1 – Nov 2022

Students in programme

Phase 2 – Autumn 2023

Teachers in the system

Phase 3 – Autumn 2023

Students who apply

Phase 4 – Spring 2024

Teacher Educators in HE

The project is led by Dr Pinky Jain and the census is ethically approved by Leeds Beckett University, all responses will be anonymous and the data will be shared with the sector via the UCET and NASBTT networks in 2023 through summary reports. The census survey for Phase 1 has been launched and will be live until March 1st 2023. The intent is that we will repeat these phases every 3 years so that we can build a comprehensive systemwide picture of the workforce over time. Please encourage your trainee/student teachers to complete the survey. Here is the link to the census for Phase 1

3. OpenLearn Create (OLC) proposal: UCET Equalities sub-group and The Open University

The UCET Equalities sub-group is also working on a proposal for a short, free course to encourage those from under-represented groups to join the teaching profession. The course would be a collaboration between UCET colleagues and would be designed and hosted on the OU's OpenLearn Create platform:

The course would cover contemporary issues in primary education, including the lack of diversity in the teaching workforce, the need for decolonisation of the curriculum and the changing nature of schools. The course is aimed at supporting those who come from currently under-represented groups who are not represented in the primary teaching workforce to learn more about becoming a teacher and the necessary requirements to apply for a teaching course. The proposal will be submitted at the next OLC commissioning round (later in the Spring 2023). If approved authoring would take place across 2023/24 ready to launch by Summer 2024.

4. ITE/Training Course of Sanctuary

Professor Heather Smith and Sarah Brownsword are leading on the ITE/T training course of sanctuary. They will be writing an ITE/T course of sanctuary for student teachers and perhaps in time establishing a PGCE/ITT course for the Universities of Sanctuary, a national network of university staff, lecturers, academics and students who work to make Higher Education institutions places of safety, solidarity and empowerment for people seeking sanctuary. If anyone is keen to join this group please contact Heather Smith

In Wales, USCET Cymru has been actively engaged in discussions with the Welsh Government, Estyn and the EWC about a range of policy issues, including the introduction of new accreditation criteria, the overlap and duplication in regulatory functions carried out by Estyn and the EWC and entry requirements for ITE. In Northern Ireland, we were pleased that the Department for Education passed funding through UCET for UCETNI members to carry out research into teachers’ professional leaning, in the context of the NI Learning Leaders strategy. In Scotland, Jackie Moses continues to represent UCET at the regular meetings of the Scottish Deans of Education.

In the international field, JNR was pleased to attend and present at the World Assembly of the International Council on Education for Teaching (ICET) at Bath Spa University, a report of which can be found at: News: ICET Report 2022 | UCET New DfE guidance in respect of the iQTS qualification can be found at International qualified teacher status (iQTS): inspection policy - GOV.UK ( and

Following the recent round of UCET elections, we are pleased to confirm the appointment of the following new members of the UCET Executive Committee: Stefanie Sullivan (Chair Elect); Lisa Murtagh (Vice Chair); James Nelson (UCETNI Chair); and Claire E. Ball-Smith (Management Forum Chair). One of next year’s key jobs for the Executive will be to review, in the light of the world we now find ourselves living in, how UCET operates and how we are organised, including our vision, mission and strategy, our governance, our membership and our organisational structure. We will consult with you all throughout this process, and together we will move forward to meet the challenges ahead.

Wishing you all a peaceful Christmas and happy new year.


December 2022

See the source image

CALL TO ACTION: UCET Teacher Education Student Census

The Equalities Subgroup of UCET has been working on a student census to build a picture of the demographics of teacher education students across England. The reason for collecting this is to develop a transparent understanding of who is undertaking courses to become a teacher and where there is underrepresentation so that, as a sector, we can target our response in an informed manner to ensure that we have a teaching community that is representative of our communities. In order to have the full picture we need your support. Please can you share the census link with your student teachers currently undertaking courses leading to QTS across all strands (including School Direct)? It would also be wonderful if could share this link amongst your social media channels and comms with your students.

This census is ethically approved by Leeds Beckett University, all responses will be anonymous and the data will be shared with the sector via the UCET and NASBTT networks in 2023 through summary reports.

The census survey will be live until March 1st 2023 after whi