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Equivalence of QTLS and QTS

Equivalence of QTLS and QTS

Since 1 April 2012, Society for Education and Training (SET), formerly the Institute for Learning (IfL), members with Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status have been recognised as qualified to teach in schools.

Statutory instrument 2012 No. 431, which was laid in parliament on 9 March 2012, amended the 2003 regulations so that holders of QTLS who are SET members may be appointed to permanent positions as qualified teachers, without any further induction requirements.

Schools and local authorities remain responsible for decisions on employing QTLS holders, and SET maintains the national register of QTLS holders, including those teaching in schools.

You can find further guidance on these changes on the Gov.uk website.

What is the difference between QTS and QTLS?

You can download a document that aims to summarise the key differences between QTS and QTLS here.

Enhanced QTLS to be launched for applicants registering from 1 September 2016

In line with the recently published Standard for Teachers' Professional Development, the enhanced process of professional formation leading to Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills status that will be launched in September 2016 enables teachers to reflect on and improve their practice by:

  • continuously demonstrating how they are keeping up to date with their subject knowledge

  • undertaking professional development activities to address areas of their practice they have identified they need to improve, that must include planning and delivery and assessment

  • experimenting with new strategies and working collabroatively with colleagues, using their feedback to help them reflect systematically in bringing about improvements

  • drawing on relevant academic research and educational theory

  • providing evidence of the impact of professional formation on their practice as well as on the outcomes of their learners

  • producing a final action plan demonstrating how they will continue to develop their practice on completion of the professional formation period.

Applicants are required to nominate a mentor (known as a 'supporter') at the beginning of the process, a trained teacher and often a manager, who will support them through the process and provide constructive feedback.

The professional formation process is underpinned by the professional standards.

See here for more information about the professional formation process.

Background on the legislation

The government confirmed that they would recognise as qualified to teach in schools:

  • teachers in further education who have been awarded Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills status by the Institute for Learning (now the Society for Education and Training) and are members of the Society for Education and Training.

  • teachers who are recognised as fully qualified teachers in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA. 

The law needed to be changed to enable this and the changes to the regulations were laid in parliament and came into force on 1 April 2012.

The regulations laid also amend the Education (School Teachers' Appraisal) (England) Regulations 2012, and came into force in September 2012. The amendment gives schools greater flexibility to choose the standards against which they wish to assess the performance of QTLS holders. QTLS teachers, unlike other teachers, don't have to be assessed against the Teachers' Standards.

The Wolf Review of Vocational Education

On 3 March 2011, a groundbreaking policy decision was taken by Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Education, to accept Professor Wolf’s recommendation, with immediate effect: 

"To allow qualified further education lecturers to teach in school classrooms on the same basis as qualified school teachers."

The government published their response to the Wolf Review of Vocational Education on 12 May 2011 stating:

“We believe that schools should be free to appoint the right teachers to deliver the appropriate curriculum for their pupils. For too long highly experienced Qualified Teacher, Learning and Skills (QTLS) holders have been unable to teach the subjects in schools that they already teach in further education colleges. This means that head teachers and governing bodies have not always been able to appoint the right teachers for the delivery of high quality education across the full range of subjects taught in schools. That is why we are giving schools the freedom to select the teachers with the skills and experience that they require."