Introducing International Qualified Teacher Status (iQTS)

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Closes 3 May 2021

Foreword by the Secretary of State for Education

Teaching is a global profession and the demand for high quality education worldwide has created an unprecedented need for qualified, highly-capable teachers. With our country’s reputation for professional and excellent teacher training, there is an opportunity for the domestic initial teacher training sector to look at ways to meet this global demand. The Department for Education is committed to fulfilling the government’s ambitions set out in the International Education Strategy 2021 Update by supporting opportunities to export excellence in initial teacher training.

The Government has developed proposals for a new international teaching qualification, International Qualified Teacher Status (iQTS). We have engaged with the profession to develop proposals for what iQTS could look like and how it could be delivered. I want us to build on the strengths and reputation of our domestic teacher training and create a new qualification, based on English standards and methods, which could be achieved in countries across the world. Our ambition is that this would give teachers around the world the opportunity to train to high standards and demonstrate their readiness to work in a range of schools worldwide. By making this qualification adaptable, it can complement the international setting the trainee is working in.

When teacher training is evidence-based I am optimistic that it will be sought after around the world. We believe that a new international teaching qualification, with the quality assurance based on our teacher standards and core content framework, will enable English ITT providers to meet growing global demand. iQTS is a new and distinct opportunity for providers to sell a Government-backed qualification in the rapidly expanding global teacher training market. We want iQTS to be an opportunity for teachers around the world to experience and benefit from quality and evidence-based teacher training that leads to better quality education around the world, whilst providing exciting new export opportunities for English teacher training providers.

Government cannot create this alone. This consultation sets out a proposed blueprint for the qualification and asks for views on various parts of the framework and market potential. Responses will help guide the design of iQTS, ensuring that it is built on and delivers high quality teacher training, and is deliverable across a range of different markets. The sector has a key role to play in the development of iQTS, the structures required to deliver it and the partnerships needed to make it happen. We will ensure that we use the feedback and continued engagement to refine the proposals, and develop a clear plan for implementation. 

Rt. Hon. Gavin Williamson CBE MP