Teacher Recruitment Campaign Targets Stem Students And Workers

8 February 2017, 13:15 | Updated: 8 February 2017, 14:20

Teacher with Blackboard

The Deputy First Minister has launched a new teacher recruitment drive targeting science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) students and workers.

The Teaching Makes People campaign is aimed at attracting university undergraduates in Stem subjects and those working in the industry into the profession.

Launching the campaign at a careers fair at Glasgow University, John Swinney said: "Teaching is a highly rewarding and inspiring career with opportunities for creativity and autonomy and, crucially, to make a positive difference to children's lives.

"However, it is often overlooked as a career choice by the 20,000 or so Stem undergraduates who qualify from Scottish universities each year.

"Many Stem graduates might not immediately think of teaching or think that they have the skills for the role. This campaign aims to encourage more people studying or working in Stem related areas to think again and consider a challenging and rewarding career in teaching where they can make a positive difference.''

He was joined by student Lauren Barrie, who spent a year working for a pharmaceutical company before applying to study teaching at Glasgow University.

She said teaching "seemed like the perfect option'', adding: "I had found the pharmaceutical industry quite unsociable whereas I knew teaching would allow me to work with others and use my knowledge of chemistry on a daily basis.

"My experience gained in schools so far as part of my training has been a learning curve but I am enjoying it so much.

"Teaching is an ideal career for Stem graduates as you get to combine working in the subject you love with the fun of being in a classroom and inspiring young people with your passion.''

Scottish Government officials will visit all Scottish universities which offer postgraduate diploma in education courses - Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, the Highlands and Islands, Strathclyde, and the West of Scotland - as part of the campaign, with billboard advertising on most campuses.

Advertising hoardings targeting career changers will also be erected at Edinburgh Haymarket, Edinburgh Waverley, Glasgow Central and Glasgow Queen Street rail stations.

In addition, the campaign involves social media, online and radio advertising and is part of an £88 million Scottish Government investment this year to recruit and retain teachers across the country.

EIS teaching union general secretary Larry Flanagan said: "This new recruitment campaign displays a welcome commitment by the Scottish Government to maintaining the very high standards of teaching in Scotland's schools.

"It is important that we continue to enhance the status of teaching to make it an even more attractive career choice for highly qualified graduates.''