The majority of work is in the state sector, but not all state schools are open to all candidates – some faith schools can by law limit their appointments to teachers of the same faith. You must have qualified teacher status (QTS) to teach in a state school, although you don’t need it to work in an independent school. But unless your teaching career will exclusively be in the independent sector – not likely for most teachers – then QTS is advisable. You should also think about where you can serve your induction – you can’t do induction, for example, at a pupil referral unit. Independent schools should be able to provide induction function but you would need to check with the school.
1. State-maintained schools
The majority of children (90 per cent) in England and Wales are educated in state-maintained schools. The four main types of state school are all funded by the local authority, follow the National Curriculum and are inspected by Ofsted. They are:
Community schools are run by the local authority, which employs staff, owns the land and buildings and sets pupil admission criteria.
Foundation schools are run by the governing body, which employs staff and sets the admissions criteria.
Trust schools are foundation school supported by a charitable foundation or trust, which appoints school governors. A trust school employs the staff and sets admissions criteria. Trust and Foundation Schools site: http://www.trustandfoundationschools.org.uk/
Voluntary-controlled schools are mainly religious schools, but run by the local authority, which employs the staff. Up to one-fifth of staff, are “reserved” teachers, appointed on the basis of faith.
Voluntary-aided schools are mainly religious schools where the governing body employs staff. Voluntary-aided schools are free by law to employ only staff of the same faith. In reality, many staff in faith schools are not of the faith due to a shortage of teachers in the faith – for example, catholic schools, which make up two-thirds of the religious secondary schools in England and Wales, employ many non-catholic teachers. However, promotion within the school to a leadership role might be more difficult for someone from outside the faith. Other religions and denominations have fewer schools and therefore less trouble filling their vacancies with teachers of the same faith.
Other state schools
Specialist schools, which account for the majority of state secondary schools, are local authority-funded and subject to Ofsted inspection. They teach the whole curriculum but focus on one subject. Specialist schools and Academies Trust (http://www.ssat.org.uk)
Academies are non-selective secondary schools, mainly in inner cities and deprived areas, set up by sponsors from business, faith or voluntary groups in partnership with central government and the local authority. Academies replace, or merge, failing schools or are set up to accommodate extra school places. If you’re considering teaching in an academy, bear in mind that they are not bound by national pay scales – academies have independent school status, so they can operate outside the School Teachers' Pay and Conditions document and can set their own pay. Specialist schools and Academies Trust (http://www.ssat.org.uk)
City technology colleges (CTCs) are publicly funded independent secondary schools teaching the national curriculum, specifically focusing on science, mathematics and technology and offering vocational qualifications in addition to GCSEs and A-levels.
Community and foundation special schools cater for children with special educational needs. You should be able to serve your induction at a special school but it is advisable to check with the local authority.
Church and faith schools set their own curriculum, admissions criteria and staffing. They are free to employ only staff of the same faith, though due to lack of numbers, many faith schools do employ teachers not of the faith.
Pupil referral units cater for pupils who may otherwise not receive suitable education, focusing on getting them back into a mainstream education. New teachers cannot serve their induction at PRUs. http://www.teachernet.gov.uk/wholeschool/behaviour/altprov/prus/
Grammar schools are state schools selecting pupils on academic ability. National Grammar Schools Association: http://www.ngsa.org.uk/
Maintained boarding schools are state schools (comprehensive or grammar), following the National Curriculum, charging fees for board only. State Boarding Schools Association: http://www.sbsa.org.uk/
2. Independent schools
Qualified teacher status (QTS) is not needed to teach in an independent school, but without one you would not be able to cross back into the state sector. It is possible to serve your induction in an independent school – check with the school whether you can be registered with the Independent Schools Council Teaching Induction Panel (ISCTIP), which provides NQT induction functions to independent schools. ISC Independent Schools Council: http://www.isc.co.uk/
New Induction Guidance and Regulations for Newly Qualified Teachers at the Teachernet site:
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