Headteacher Shortage

06 March 2015

A recent survey of academies has shown that 1 in 4 headteachers have left their posts in 2014. The introduction of “no-notice” inspections has affected many schools gradings. With 23 of the 40 schools inspected by Ofsted, being downgraded.

The general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, Brian Lightman feels that sacking under-performing headteachers is the wrong way to improve schools, and believes helping and supporting them is a much more effective tactic.

“If we are to realise that we need the highest calibre of staff to provide a world-class education service, we need to provide appropriate levels of support for school leaders.

It is a waste of public money to get rid of so many heads and senior leaders. We’re having more difficulty than ever before recruiting school leaders and even middle managers.”

The cost of relieving teachers from their duties is having adverse effect on school budgets. With 1 in 4 academies paying severance packages out in 2014, and 1 in 8 paying more than £75,000 in severance costs.

With severance costs rising, many academies are struggling to find the required budget to employ the best possible replacements.

Allan Hickie, a partner at UHY Hacker Young, feels that current spending restraints are affecting the quality of headteacher’s available to academies.

“Typically, employers respond to a shortage of talent in the marketplace by offering a more competitive salary, but schools have very limited scope to do that at the moment.”

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