A MORAY AND Highlands MSP has welcomed moves that could see Moray Council spearhead a scheme that is aimed at relieving the teacher recruitment crisis.
The Tory MSP for the Highlands and Islands, Mary Scanlon, has been commenting on the announcement this week that teachers who qualified outside of the Scottish education system would be allowed to teach in Scotland.
Proposed is a pilot scheme that, if approved by the General Teaching Council of Scotland, will allow such as qualified members of Armed Forces families to teach immediately while undergoing training in the Scottish education system.
Confirming that she had met with Moray Council officials and discussed the matter, Mrs Scanlon said: “The teacher shortage in Moray has been very well documented and I know the council has been working hard to address this issue with little success.
“I have met with council officers and local teaching leaders and they were clear that their problem could be drastically reduced if spouses of military personnel who have teaching qualifications from elsewhere in the United Kingdom could teach in Scotland, but there has been a reluctance from the General Teaching Council of Scotland to allow this.
“I am glad there has been a consultation on changing this and Moray will now be used as a pilot to trial this new proposal. With 3,000 service personnel living with their families in Moray while stationed at Lossiemouth or Kinloss there is a huge potential to tap into this unused resource.”
It is believed that around 20 qualified teachers currently reside in Moray as members of RAF or Army families based at RAF Lossiemouth and Kinloss Barracks.
The MSP added: “We know there are spouses from military families who are qualified teachers who have either remained out of work or have had to take jobs outside the education profession.
“So not only will this assist with the chronic teacher shortage in Moray it will also be a great boost to people getting back into a job they enjoy and are very well trained for.
“This really will be a win-win situation with more qualified teachers finding work and issues associated with teacher shortages, such as temporary school closures as we have seen, being reduced.”
The GTCS will decide on the proposals when they meet in in December.