It was announced in November 2017 that the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) is being absorbed into the Department for Education (DfE) in a bid to boost teacher recruitment. There has been growing concern about teacher shortages in schools and recruitment to teacher training which has sparked a number of changes to the regulation of the profession.
It has been confirmed that the NCTL’s role in regulating the teaching profession, including misconduct hearings, will continue in a separate agency known as the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA). The TRA will continue to be an executive agency of the DfE and it began to operate from 1st April 2018. The agency are now responsible for the regulation of the teaching profession, supporting employers, schools and head teachers with safeguarding responsibilities.
The TRA will therefore continue the role of the NCTL by taking action in respect of allegations of serious teacher misconduct and helping employers to complete pre-recruitment checks to ensure that they are employing teachers who are appropriately qualified for their role.
So what does this change mean for teachers?
It has been confirmed that the TRA will be led by existing teams at the NCTL and that it will undertake its work on the same legislative basis as the NCTL. At present it therefore appears that there will be no material change to the way that misconduct cases will be considered by the TRA. However, with what is a significant re-organisation of the regulatory body, it is important for teachers to keep up-to-date with any changes being introduced by the TRA. It is likely that any changes to the TRA’s approach in considering misconduct cases may only become apparent once professional conduct panel hearings are being held by the TRA in the coming months.
If you are facing any form of investigation by the TRA please contact specialist lawyers for expert advice. For more information, visit our TRA page or call our team on 01616 966 229.
By Brea Carney-Jones, graduate paralegal in the regulatory department.