470 Teaching Vacancies Ahead Of New Term

There were 469 primary and secondary teaching posts being advertised by councils as of June 22.

Dundee City Council reported the highest number of vacancies with 45 primary posts and 57 secondary posts unfilled.

Meanwhile East Lothian Council had 50 vacancies for primary teachers, and 20 for secondary teachers.

Councils reported a further 40 vacant posts for teaching assistants.

The figures were obtained by the Liberal Democrats using Freedom of Information requests, with 27 of Scotland's 32 local authorities responding.

The party's education spokesman Liam McArthur MSP said schools could be "facing a recruitment crisis''.

He said: "Weeks ahead of the start of the new school year many schools do not appear to have the staff they need to ensure that pupils get the education they deserve.

"A recruitment crisis would only increase the pressure on other teachers and make life more difficult for pupils who need the most support

``Since the SNP came into government the number of teachers has fallen by more than 4,200.

"Promises on class sizes have been broken, with average primary school class sizes now larger than in 2006, and basic standards of literacy and numeracy have declined. The failure of the Scottish Government to get to grips with the problems in the system is scandalous.

"The system is creaking at the seams. It is no surprise that we have seen reports that teacher morale is at rock bottom and we are struggling to fill vacancies.''

A Scottish Government spokesman said: "The recruitment and employment of teachers is a matter for individual local authorities with all 32 committing to maintaining their teacher numbers and pupil teacher ratio at 2014 levels for 2015-16.

"The Scottish Government has taken steps to ensure an adequate supply of teachers in Scotland and over the last four years we have increased student teacher intake targets to ensure our schools have the right number of teachers with the right skills."