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13/09/13 12:58

Teacher employment

Lowest number of claimants looking for teacher jobs in eight years.

New figures have indicated a fall in the number of teachers claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, with the claimant count for people looking for work as teachers at its lowest since 2005.The figures, based on those claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance in August this year, show teacher unemployment in Scotland remains the lowest in the UK. A total of 240 claimants in Scotland were looking for jobs as teachers – the lowest August figure since the series began eight years ago.

This week, Finance Secretary John Swinney announced in his Budget the Government’s ongoing commitment to maintain teacher numbers in line with pupil numbers.

Education Secretary Michael Russell said:

“These findings back up other sources of information that show we are moving in the right direction and follow a huge amount of work by the Scottish Government, in the teeth of Westminster budget cuts, to improve teacher employment.

“Teacher numbers were at too high a level in 2007, which local authorities found unsustainable. Action has been taken and we have worked with local authorities to maintain teacher numbers in line with pupil numbers, to help meet the demands of primary and secondary schools across the country. The Finance Secretary’s renewed commitment to this, set out in the Budget this week, underlines how strongly we recognise this issue.

“In addition, we are making timely decisions about the number of teachers we need to train and we have increased the number of student teacher places by 670 in the last two years.

“Good progress is being made and more teachers are finding jobs. We will continue working closely with councils to ensure teachers are able to gain work in our classrooms and continue the excellent work taking place in classrooms across Scotland.”

Notes to editors

These teacher figures follow positive findings from Office for National Statistics Labour Market statistics published earlier this week, which showed the overall claimant count in Scotland has now fallen for 10 consecutive months and is at its lowest since May 2009.