The £12 million Transition Training Fund, which was announced at the beginning of the month, to help people who face job losses in the oil and gas sector find alternative employment will also be available to support those who want to become teachers, the Education Secretary has announced.
Angela Constance told the Aberdeen Learning Festival this is the latest in a number of steps the Scottish Government is taking to boost teacher numbers in places which can have difficulty attracting them.
The Transition Training Fund was set up to help people move into other roles in the oil and gas, energy or manufacturing industries by offering grants to support retraining or further education.
It is now being developed, working with Skills Development Scotland and the Energy Jobs Taskforce, to help oil and gas sector staff bring their skills and expertise into teaching – particularly in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.
Ms Constance said
We have a highly skilled oil and gas workforce and it is important that we harness their abilities to benefit the next generation, the future of the industry and the north-east of Scotland.
Developing options within the £12 million Transition Training Fund will help ensure we don’t lose valuable oil and gas sector skills, which can be put to excellent use
and will lead to more high-quality, passionate teachers in the area.
This is the latest in a range of actions we are taking to make sure we have the right teachers in the right places to benefit our young people.
We have launched our #inspiringteachers campaign to encourage more people to enter the profession. We have increased student teacher intake targets for the fifth year in a row and are setting targets to train teachers in the subjects where they are needed most.
We are also supporting innovative ways to encourage more graduates to come into teaching in areas which have difficulty recruiting teachers. This includes the University of Aberdeen’s distance learning initial teacher education programme, which allows council employees to retrain as teachers while staying in work. Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Moray, Highland and Angus Councils are already benefiting from this.
Visit the Teach In Scotland website for more information about teaching, training, salaries and benefits package.