Data has revealed that applications for teacher training positions across the UK have surged since the first lockdown.
UCAS released statistics on the number of applications across the UK where it was revealed over 50,000 people had applied for the position.
The West Midlands is among the top three regions where applicants were placed in 2020.
Kate Aspinall, teaching school manager at the alliance of leading learning in Shropshire said: “Overall, our applications were up by 43% from the previous year, most of which came from the lockdown period”.
Places across the country were already filled up by July with many people having to defer until the 2021/2022 cohort.
Kate added: “We are offering to those applicants with a genuine desire to want to join the profession and not to just become a statistic that becomes another teacher who leaves the profession further down the line”.
As a result, the government have pulled bursary funding for most positions, leaving grants for just maths, physics, languages and classics.
The government have redirected the funding to increasing new teacher salaries by 5.5% up to a minimum of £30,000 in 2022.
This increase will hopefully urge teachers to stay in the profession instead of joining in home of getting a bursary and leaving after their training year.
Gareth Utting, an English teacher and father of three, died suddenly in 2014 just as his students at Thomas Adams School, Wem, GCSE’s were looming.
Now, Alison Utting, 54, is raising concerns for the surge in teaching application since Covid, despite the profession being amongst the top four most stressful positions in the UK.
“I don’t see many retiring as teachers these days, I do sadly see quite a few dying”
Alison Utting, Ex English Teacher
For some, lockdown was a time where people could properly research and have the opportunity to create their applications, but Alison highlighted her concern for people who may have applied on a ‘whim’ as many other jobs became threatened.
She said: “For anyone who’s jumping in on it on a whim, I think they will jump out just as quickly once reality hits”.
As a teacher herself, Alison sees how difficult it can be as she said: “I really do fear for my friends still in the arena. I don’t see many people retiring as teachers these days. I do sadly see quite a few dying as teachers”.
Teachers are under more pressure than ever with student and teacher absence at an all time high as well as uncertainty surrounding exams they spend years preparing for.
“Even the strongest, most resilient personalities are being driven into the ground by teaching – especially this year”.