Scottish Government
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Review of teacher employment

The group tasked with reviewing the Teachers' Agreement, reached in 2001 following the McCrone Inquiry, has published its recommendations today.

Chaired by Professor Gerry McCormac, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Stirling, its key recommendations include:

  • No increase in class contact time for teachers in Scotland
  • Increased flexibility in the use of non-contact time over longer periods
  • Control of the number and grade of promoted posts devolved to schools
  • The creation of a revitalised Professional Review and Personal Development system for all teachers
  • Teacher-led involvement of external experts to contribute to the delivery of the curriculum
  • Ending of the Chartered Teacher Scheme

Professor McCormac said:

"Education is of paramount importance to the future of society. It has the potential to set each of us on a personal journey of discovery, allowing us to better engage with the world, and to secure a sustainable future for ourselves and our families.

"The teaching profession, alongside parents and guardians, has a vital role to play in ensuring that our children and young people reach their full potential.

"The evidence we obtained during the review demonstrated clearly the commitment, passion and expertise of teachers and indeed all those involved in education in Scotland.

"We believe that the potential for enhanced professionalism created by our recommendations, alongside those of Professor Graham Donaldson's report will further improve learning outcomes for children and young people in Scotland.

"Our recommendations reinforce existing good practice. Our advice on contact time will increase flexibility in the teaching profession, and revitalising professional development will enhance teacher education, further improving the quality of teachers in Scotland.

"The 34 recommendations of the review group now sit with the Scottish Government. I trust they will be given full consideration."

Full membership of the group was:

  • Professor Gerry McCormac, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Stirling
  • Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh, Hamilton Burns WS Solicitors, Glasgow
  • Professor Graham Donaldson CB, former Senior Chief inspector of HMIE, now of the University of Glasgow
  • Isabelle Boyd CBE, Headteacher, Cardinal Newman High School, Bellshill
  • Sue Bruce, Chief Executive, City of Edinburgh Council
  • Moira McCrossan - Retired primary Headteacher and former President of the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS)
  • Alf Young - Journalist and economic commentator

Its remit was "to review the current arrangements for teacher employment in Scotland and make recommendations designed to secure improved educational outcomes for our children and young people," considering the following issues:

  • The need for a flexible, creative, learner-centred teaching profession that supports Curriculum for Excellence and excellent education for the future
  • Whether the teachers' agreement, "A Teaching Profession for the 21st Century" (TP21), is delivering all the intended benefits
  • Public expenditure issues and affordability
  • The need for a teacher workforce that is of an appropriate size and quality in the short to medium term
  • The need to continue to attract talented people into teaching
  • How to recognise and encourage excellence in the classroom
  • The need to develop leadership capacity to improve education
  • The role of other staff in schools and the relationship between their responsibilities and those of teachers
  • The recommendations of the Donaldson review of teacher education
  • Teachers' class contact time

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