Early Career Teachers

Helping your career go further

Research shows that the first few years of teacher development are the most crucial. That’s why our highly supportive Early Career programme aims to develop knowledge, understanding and confidence, supporting NQTs with a range of practical strategies and techniques to help them survive their first years of teaching.

Changes for Newly Qualified Teachers

More than just a change of name from NQT to ECT, there is a whole new framework, aptly named the Early Career Framework, developed to provide more support to new teachers. With retention an issue across the education sector, investment in teachers’ development has never been more important. 

The Early Career Framework (ECF) is a government-funded entitlement to a well-structured two-year support package of high professional development. Improved training and better development opportunities available to teachers are amongst the highest priorities for this new framework.

Programme Details

  1. About the programme

    The Three Rivers Teaching School is working with Ambition to deliver a framework that sets out all the knowledge and practice Early Career Teachers will need to learn and embed in their first two years of teaching. The Early Career Teachers Programme is designed to support early career teachers and their mentors to embed the necessary standards of classroom practice, described in the framework.

    The programme covers the Early Career Framework through three termly stands of learning. Each strand encompasses many parts of a teachers’ practice, however with a core thread throughout. They are:

    1. Behaviour
    2. Instruction
    3. Subject

    Within these strands, content moves from concrete (for example an entry routine) to more abstract (for example the types of knowledge pupils need to learn). A concept will need to be returned to multiple times and from different perspectives to ensure it becomes embedded.

    Each strand is comprised of weekly modules which include:

    1. Self-Directed Study Materials for the ECT
    2. Self-Directed Study Materials for the Mentor (optional)
    3. Instructional Coaching session between the Mentor and ECT

    The self-directed study materials and coaching are supplemented with facilitated live sessions. These are designed to help ECTs and mentors make sense of independent study and address common misconceptions through discussions with their peers and an expert facilitator. 

    This is the full induction programme (FIP) offer and is available to all schools across the region. 

    The Three Rivers Teaching School Hub undertook a rigorous due diligence process with the lead providers prior to deciding on Ambition Institute as our delivery partner. This included attending DfE events; numerous meetings with providers; the sharing of experiences and information with other teaching school hubs and reviewing the early roll-out materials.

  2. What options do schools have?

    The school decides on the best route for the ECT. Alternative delivery options are set out below:


    Option 1 - Full Induction Programme (FIP)

    Schools are encouraged by the Department for Education (DfE) to choose a Full Induction Programme (FIP) approach to induction. This is a fully funded programme that offers high-quality training for early career teachers and their mentors. The Three Rivers Teaching School hub have opted to deliver this in partnership with Ambition who will complement the self study and mentor sessions with face to face CPD. This is the easiest option for schools and schools benefit from the highest level of financial investment made by DfE.

    Fidelity checks by the appropriate body

    Where schools opt for the Full Induction Programme, which includes materials and funded training, the appropriate body does not need to carry out ECF fidelity checks. 


    Option 2 - Core Induction Programme (CIP)

    The Core Induction Programme (CIP) option gives schools the opportunity to design their own CPD programme, drawing upon the ECF materials developed by lead providers (who have been commissioned by DfE to create the materials) but they will need to self-fund the design and deliver the early-career teacher and mentor training themselves. 

    The early-roll out CIP resources can be viewed here. This will move to the new DfE portal in summer 2021.

    Fidelity checks by the appropriate body

    Where schools deliver induction through a Core Induction Programme , additional quality assurance will be necessary by the appropriate body in order to safeguard ECTs’ entitlement to an ECF-based induction.


    Option 3 - Core Induction Programme (CIP)

    A school-based programme of induction will receive no support from the Department for Education (DfE). The school is responsible for developing their own programme, subject or phase-specific coaching, and training for mentors in line with the Statutory Guidance.

    Fidelity checks by the appropriate body

    Schools delivering their own induction programmes will require an appropriate body to check these have been designed and delivered with fidelity to the ECF. This means that training and support provided to the ECT has covered the ECF evidence statements in sufficient breadth and depth.

  3. Funding

    The ECF is free to schools. Details of the funding schools will receive in the second year of induction are available here 

    • per Early Career Teacher: £1,200 to fund 5% off timetable in the second year of induction for all early career teachers in state schools (paid in arrears at the end of the second year of induction)
    • per mentor: £900 to fund time for mentors to support ECTs in the second year of induction in state schools (20 hours) (paid in arrears at the end of the second year of induction)
    • Full Induction Programme (FIP) only for the first and second year of induction: ECF lead providers will be paid directly by the DfE, so schools will not face any payment burdens
  4. Registering for September 2021

    From May 2021, schools will be asked to register on the DfE portal to indicate their ECF induction preference.  Later in the summer, schools will register the number of ECTs to be employed in their school from September 2021 so that the lead provider and their delivery partner are aware of each school's need.

  5. Appropriate Body for ECT induction

    From September 2021, induction becomes a two-year process rather than one year. Schools will need to select a rigorous and robust Appropriate Body (AB) to quality assure the indication and assessment of their ECT. In light of the changes, schools should seek to commission the services of an AB that offers more than the minimum requirements. The alignment of the AB service and ECF delivery is an advantage that the Three Rivers Teaching School Hub can offer. 

    Schools should be familiar with Induction for early career teachers (England): Statutory guidance for appropriate bodies, headteachers, school staff and governing bodies (March 2021). 

  6. Futher DfE guidance

    Details are published online by DfE, including the financial arrangements for schools.

  7. Other guidance

    The University of Central London (UCL) has developed generic guidance for schools and trusts to help prepare for the introduction of the ECF.

Register your interest

Fill in the form below to register your interest in the Early Career Teaching course and we will get back in touch with further information.

“Life as a teacher begins the day you realise that you're always a learner.”

Susan Hines, Teachers as Learners

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