HC Deb 07 March 1966 vol 725 cc426-7W
Mr. Hugh Jenkins

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he has now considered the Report of the National Advisory Council on the Supply and Training of Teachers for Further Education; and if he will make a statement on the action he is taking with regard to it.

Mr. Prentice

The Report of the National Advisory Council's Standing Sub-Committee on the Supply and Training of Teachers for Further Education is being published today. My right hon. Friend is most grateful to Sir Lionel Russell and his colleagues on the Standing Sub-Committee for this valuable survey of training needs and of teacher demand and supply in this field.

The Sub-Committtee recommended that a requirement should be introduced in 1969 that all new entrant assistant lecturers should receive professional training within three years of their appointment (five years initially). My right hon. Friend is at one with the Sub-Committee in the importance which he attaches to professional training for teaching, but at the present time of pressure on teacher supply and on available financial resources he would not feel justified in imposing a requirement which could be expected to have some effect on recruitment and which would be bound to involve additional expenditure in a period when the demands on the further education service will be increasing rapidly.

My right hon. Friend would however wish, so far as present resources will permit, to encourage training on a voluntary basis by an increased emphasis on secondment on salary both for longer courses of the sandwich type and for shorter courses taken by teachers in service, and he hopes shortly to issue a circular containing proposals to that end.