Baby Boom Doom


There is going to be a teacher shortage…the problem is a result of government failure to recruit more teachers in light of a baby boom, as the BBC put it on the radio.

Others might categorize the problem as having too many pupils due to the flood of immigrants coming to this country rather than too few teachers….just as the ‘housing problem’ is not one of too few houses but too many people walking across the border demanding a house.

Control the immigration and there wouldn’t be a problem.

The BBC, as stated, doesn’t mention ‘immigration’ just the fact that by 2023 we will have 9% more primary school pupils and 17% more secondary school pupils and that apparently we were 17% under target for teacher recruitment in 2014 and that Labour is outraged.   Which you might consider odd, as there are more teachers now and far more teaching assistants than in 2010.

The BBC is also less than honest when it comes to counting those teacher numbers.

It tells us…

Teachers warn of unqualified staff

A teachers’ union is warning that schools are increasingly likely to use unqualified teaching staff.

“Parents no longer have the certainty when they send their child to school that they will be taught by qualified teachers,” says NASUWT leader Chris Keates.

Labour’s Tristram Hunt says “this is nothing less than a scandal”.


The BBC does mention this…

But the Conservatives say there are fewer teachers in school without qualified status than in 2010.


But goes on to give us this less than clear claim bolstered by eyecatchingly large percentages….

The union has asked its members about their experiences. Among the 4,600 who responded 61% said they were “working alongside unqualified staff”, with 66% claiming the situation was “deteriorating” because of funding problems.

So just how many qualified teachers are there?  451,000. Just for a bit of perspective.  How many unqualified?  17,100.   But then there are also teaching assistants….so when the BBC tells us that 61% told the union that they are ‘working alongside unqualified staff’ does that also include those teaching assistants? Kind of skewing things a bit by not clarifying that.  In 2005 there were 434,200 qualified teachers and 18,800 unqualifed. Do the maths.

We now have more qualified teachers and fewer unqualified teachers both numerically and as a percentage.

Just how many teaching assistants do we have?  In 2005 there were 147,200, in 2013, 243,700.  In other words teachers are getting more help than ever before to teach…..Teaching assistants being there to assist teachers not to teach pupils themselves.

What of Labour’s Tristram Hunt who is ranting that “this is nothing less than a scandal”?

What’s the truth?

Is it any good asking the BBC?  Well it depends.

Here’s how they report the facts in the above article…

The most recent Department for Education figures available, for 2013, show the number of unqualified teachers rose compared with the previous year, from 14,800 to 17,100, but is lower than in 2010, when there were 17,800 of teachers without qualified teacher status.

However for academies, the proportion of unqualified teachers has risen each year since 2010, from 2,200 to 7,900.

It tells us that there are fewer unqualified teachers now than in 2010…but could have gone back to 2005 when there were 18,800 on Labour’s watch at a time when there were fewer qualified teachers as well…so a higher proportion were unqualified under Labour not just numerically.

And what of that word ‘proportion’?  Look at the second sentence…’However for academies, the proportion of unqualified teachers has risen each year since 2010, from 2,200 to 7,900.

The ‘proportion’ of unqualified teachers in academies has actually dropped….as the BBC’s own figures show in a more robust analysis.

In November 2010 there were indeed 2,200 unqualified teachers in Academies or 9.6%, in 2013 there were 7,900….a big rise….but that’s only 5.3%…how come?  In 2010 there were 22,800 qualified teachers in Academies, in 2013 there were 149,300….a  huge rise in qualified staff at Academies.

The BBC is being less than honest in its reports…on the one hand you have the regular news report which doesn’t give the full facts and favours Labour and the unions in its nuanced approach whilst the more indepth analysis, which I suspect most people won’t read, gives the figures but ends with this odd conclusion…

So as far as those political positions on qualified versus unqualified teachers are concerned, it seems the parties’ rhetoric is largely about staking out different visions of teaching and the school system.

One view is of a less regulated, more diverse teaching workforce; the other argues that formal training in the skills of being a teacher is an essential part of bolstering the status of the profession.

That’s a statement that flies in the face of all the facts that they have just given us on the numbers which clearly show the number of teachers has grown under the Coalition whilst the number of unqualified staff has fallen from November 2010…and not only that but the help teachers get in the way of teaching assistants has grown enormously which should make their job easier.

How the BBC can claim that Labour is the party of the qualified, high status teacher is beyond me…it’s just not borne out by the facts.



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17 Responses to Baby Boom Doom

  1. Doublethinker says:

    An excellent example of BBC bias at work to put Labour in power and discredit the Tories. This goes on day in day out and has been for decades. It is extremely harmful for our democracy. If the BBC were a commercial organisation with an allegiance to the Labour Party like the Guardian it would be acceptable behaviour. But the way the BBC is funded by a state imposed tax makes this bias totally unacceptable.
    As to the impact of mass immigration on our country anyone with half a brain must see that it has been disastrous and that it will get steadily worse form here on in. Only those with a blind prejudice in favour of immigration could think otherwise.


    • Merched Becca says:

      The question must be asked, what is the Tory government, its supporters and its MPs doing about this ? I dare say, that one or two of them frequently visit this site ?
      One has just defected to UKIP according to Al Beeb .


      • I Can See Clearly Now says:

        The question must be asked, what is the Tory government, its supporters and its MPs doing about this ?

        They are encouraging it. That (a)keeps their business friends happy – cheap labour; and (b)enables them to spin ‘We’ve increased the number of jobs.’


      • richard D says:

        One has just defected to UKIP according to Al Beeb .

        And that would be the ex-Tory, who was fired last week because he wanted to stand as an independent councillor, and will not be standing for UKIP in the election, but will be standing as a potential UKIP councillor on the same day.

        Hmmm – clearly a man that Mr Farage desperately wants in his party – can’t decide from one day to the next if he wants to be a Conservative, independent or UKIP councillor.

        I’m not sure Mr Farage will regard this as a significant coup.


  2. G.W.F. says:

    At the risk of upsetting our hard working teachers it might be worth mentioning that the presence of teaching unions in UAF, Hope not Hate, SWP and the various Stand Up To movements designed to prevent people holding legal demonstrations, and the pursuance of No Platformist policies, seem to conflict with their obligations to educate children.


  3. johnnythefish says:

    This to me is a prime example of the BBC’s biased reporting and is nothing less than blatant Labour/union propaganda. It is slyly juxtaposed ‘facts’ presented without any balance in context or analysis, let alone challenge, with a whole shedful of inconvenient facts omitted so as not to undermine the narrative.

    To the trusting and unenlightened listener, though, it will be yet another ‘factor’ to consider when casting their vote. Yet another subversive BBC/Labour ‘job done’ in destroying what’s left of democracy in Britain.


  4. GCooper says:

    This is precisely the sort of detailed post and well argued comments that our resident BBC lovers avoid like the plague. They have nothing they can say to refute the points made so they stay silent, concentrating their efforts on thread deflection elsewhere.

    Once again, the BBC is caught red handed acting as a mouthpiece for socialism.


    • 60022Mallard says:

      The explosion in teaching assistants was one of the major growth areas of public sector employment during the “good times”.

      Just as with the NHS, spending on schools rose well above inflation.

      Now how did the output compare with the input, which is all that ever gets mentioned? Just like the NHS the law of diminishing returns seemed to operate for every extra pound in.


      • richard D says:

        Don’t be silly, 60022Mallard (lovely machine, that), the public sector does not ‘DO’ output measures.

        Teachers don’t want their pupils’ attainments measured at any age, councillors don’t want any costs of unit delivery measured (that might actually lead to comparison between councils…..),the NHS and other public sector bodies all shy away from such measures – it’s always easier to look at inputs, and campaign for ever-increasing levels of inputs – cash, employees, etc., rather than look at what is being achieved with these resources.

        Anyone can do ‘more’ with extra resources, but how much ‘more’ are they really doing, and is the cost justified. And for those who say we shouldn’t look at the public sector in that way – b@ll@cks.


        • Mark says:

          Maybe 60022Mallard should have a new identity of 4468Mallard.

          That was the locomotive’s LNER number when it set the world steam speed record in the pre-BR days of 1938.


          • Essex Man says:

            60022 is Mallard`s BR registration no. Hang on ,don`t the Millipeed`s mob ,want to bring back the glory days of BR . Filthy trains , stale sarnies , constant strikes & Jimmy Saville ,advertising ,”The age of the train “. God help us .


            • D1004 says:

              BR’ s glory days a bit dodgy says Essex man……..let’s see, the Treasury kept a firm hand on spending anything, trains were old, but trains didn’t get stopped and turned around when running late and dumping the passengers short, trains ran around maintenance work on other lines with a delay of around an hour but the trains still left the right station and went to the right station, no dumping passengers on buses at the least excuse, tickets were not sold for £400 to get to Manchester before 10 am, the farce at finsbury park at Xmas would not have happened as passenger train drivers would be trained on freight locos and therefore no lack of drivers stopping the job. Oh and finally no deaths at Paddington, Slough, grayrigg, and the cause of why the Cambridge train threw itself across a platform because the point bolts had been undone would not lead to shrugged shoulders because no one knows who the hell is working on the line. Oh and 5 billion pounds not spent propping up ” private ” companies. Yeah BR was shit and the men who turned Chiltern Railways and GB Railfreight into the best companies in their classes were never trained by it either.


      • John Anderson says:

        teaching assistants primarily to cope with the huge influx of kids who speak little or no English.

        I remember in 1956 we had some kids from Humgary sent to our kinda-orphange. One guy, age 13 or 14, joined our dorm. Hr did not speak a word of English, was obviously traumatised.

        We did our best (our Cristian duty) to help him join in, to “integrate”. He in his turn made friends with us, tried really hard over the next couple of years to learn our language, to play our sports – to do well in lessons.

        It’s a question of numbers. Many years on – I still remember him, I hope he had a good life. I think he was made very welcome – and he returned our feelings.


  5. johnnythefish says:

    So by the time we got to 2010 with several million added to the population since Labour came to power and our infrastructure already groaning, where exactly were the projects to increase capacity in our public services, including the need for schools to cope with an inevitable baby boom?

    Not the sort of inconvenient question the BBC tends to ask of its Labourmates but to anyone with an ounce of common sense is absolutely bleedin obvious.


  6. Philip says:

    Weaponise the Schools approach. Problem being that most Teachers don’t want to ‘strike’ and are not that keen on the Teachers unions either (except as a fail-safe if their jobs are put on the line). No teacher has ever been sacked for incompetence. In truth there is not much to strike about except for the increased burden(daft tick box targets) imposed by Labour (ED Balls at DCSF) creating a very stress-full environment full of bureaucratic nonsense ‘equality, racial and genderless bollocks’ that has nothing at all to with teaching a class in a hostile environment. I am not talking about the kids, I mean the ‘stress’ is of the Schools making in certain rotten Labour boroughs. The things parents want is removal of LEA control – which is the cause of a lot of left agenda ‘directives’) and not Islam either. I was surprised to learn that private schools offer a lower wage than state schools do and you wont see any private school in the state School league tables. Labour want to abolish ‘privileged’ education and yet the BBC and Labour elite send THEIR own kids to exclusive private schools and ignore the problems that they have caused for the rest of us. It is hypocritical and dishonest. The Unions are less supportive of those who question what is there to strike about. We all have financial problems caused by Labours last time in office, the ‘protected’ ones are those on public services pension contracts which were ‘very generous’ to the top executive and a lot less to the Teachers who effectively were undermined in status to social workers with a teaching brief.


  7. Nesco says:

    The statement that ” no teacher has ever been sacked for incompetence ” is simply untrue and typical of the ignorance of many posters. Two teachers were sacked at my local state school, one for incompetence and one for lack of effort. Both were given twenty minutes to clear their desks and get out. Elsewhere teachers are sacked if they fail an OFSTED and subsequent targets. Sometimes whole schools are closed with the entire staff losing their jobs after failing an OFSTED inspection, even though some of the staff might be rather good.
    No group of workers is more tested than teachers. To believe that those that fail continue as before is laughable.


    • Laska says:

      Agree. The power of headteachers – of which I know a few – has been massively increased and they get rid of teachers ruthlessly. The legend of “unsackability” no longer exist. One thing I would add concerns the problem of “teaching assistants”. They are the bane of schools. They are usually uneducated and very rarely contribute. I never could understand why teachers accepted their presence beyond the need for support for disabled and learners with identified conditions. The expansion of their numbers occurred under New Labour – if I recollect correctly there were 25,000 in 1997, now 250,000! – which mopped up a huge number of single mothers because they wanted to get them into “work”, and more recently immigrants because of the surge in immigrant children.