England’s Equivalent of Teaching Council is Abolished

by admin on 31/03/2012

The General Teaching Council (GTC) for England, their equivalent of Ireland’s Teaching Council, has ceased operations. From tomorrow, April 1st, the responsibilities for all of their activities is to be transferred to a “Teaching Agency” within the Department for Education. Michael Gove, England’s Education Secretary in the Coalition government, announced in June 2010 that the government was to abolish the organisation. He said he was “deeply sceptical” of the GTC’s purpose and benefit to teachers, and believed it “does little to raise teaching standards or professionalism”. He further stated that “I believe this organisation does little to raise teaching standards or professionalism. Instead it simply acts as a further layer of bureaucracy while taking money away from teachers.”

In a statement on its website today, the GTC says:

“From 1 April 2012, the Teaching Agency , a new executive agency of the Department for Education (DfE), will be the body responsible for the following activities in England:

•The award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)

•The issue of induction certificates

•Hearing induction appeals

•The regulation of the teaching profession

 There will be no requirement to register with the new Teaching Agency and no registration fee following the GTC’s abolition.”

If this is what is happening to the equivalent of Ireland’s Teaching Council, should the same idea be considered in this jurisdiction? Indeed, if this was to happen in Ireland, it would be music to the ears of thousands of teachers as the Teaching Council remains deeply unpopular, largely due to the annual renewal fee of €90 (which is due to be reduced to €65 from next year). What do you think? Should we follow the example of England and abolish the Teaching Council? Share your views by adding a comment below. If it’s your first time to comment on the site, your comment will not appear automatically until it’s been verified that the comment is not spam. After that, you’ll be able to comment as much as you wish.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Una March 31, 2012 at 3:48 pm

Not a truer word was ever said than what Michael Grove said above. I’ve been part of The Teaching Council since it started and I have never seen it do anything to “raise the standards!” I think Ireland should definitely follow in England’s footsteps on this one. By having a ‘Teaching Agency’ within the Department of Education the same job will be done without all the fuss!

Robert Chaney March 31, 2012 at 10:12 pm

I think we have to be very careful before we rush to a conclusion on this matter, and I certainly don’t think we should do something just because it has been done in England (and I say that as an Englishman!!)
And we shouldn’t abolish the TC before it has even got to the point where it is full-filling all of its functions.
Yes, we should criticise it for not doing things more quickly.
Yes, it needs to sell itself better.
Yes, we should challenge it to be more open, transparent, responsive, able to listen and take criticism.
Yes, we should challenge it to deal with the issues that we are concerned about.
Yes, €90 is too much.
Yes, we should welcome the promotion of CPD and Research.
Yes, we need teaching training to be regulated and improved.
Yes, it needs to evolve itself into something that serves us teachers far better,( e.g a publication like the Lancet that publishes research findings)
But don’t just decide that it should be gotten rid of.

Andrew September 13, 2012 at 12:59 pm

I disagree, Mr. Chaney. The calamity and sheer force of obstruction that is the Teaching Council needs to be abolished *before* it can fulfill all of it’s “functions”. Desperately wasteful body, and just another problem for an already beleaguered profession.

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