The Teaching and Higher Education Act 1998 required all NQTs qualified after May 7 1999 to complete three full terms of induction (or equivalent for part-time staff).
The new arrangements were laid before Parliament in April 1999 (The Education (Induction Arrangements for School Teachers) (England) Regulations 1999) and in DfEE Circular 5/99: The Induction Period for Newly Qualified Teachers. This was superseded in 2003 by DfES Guidance 0485/2003: The Induction Support Programme for Newly Qualified Teachers, hereafter referred to as the Guidance. This can be downloaded from the TeacherNet Web site:
Teachers are still awarded Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) at the end of their initial teacher training courses, but they are not eligible for employment as a teacher in a maintained or non-maintained school unless they complete their induction year satisfactorily. Managers should note that it is not a reinstatement of the probationary year abolished in 1992. In this system, schools were required to pass or fail an NQT after their first year, but were under no obligation to provide training. This situation has now changed.
There are now two elements to the induction year, both of which are the responsibility of schools:
- a programme of monitoring and support
- an assessment of the NQT’s performance.
The Guidance is the key to the whole process and all NQT managers should have a copy. If, however, you feel less than keen on spending a weekend reading this hefty tome, you can refer to the summary provided in this section, which covers the key aspects.