Updated QTLS eligibility criteria published for 2025 cohort

The Society for Education and Training (SET) is pleased to announce that updated eligibility criteria for Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status are now live. QTLS is a professional status for teachers and trainers in the Further Education (FE) and Skills sector, gained after successfully completing a six-month period of professional formation and maintained through SET membership. All SET members awarded with QTLS status, who maintain this status through SET membership, are issued with a Teacher Reference Number and will appear on both SET’s professional status register and the Department for Education’s (DfE) central record of qualified teachers.   

An annual review of QTLS eligibility criteria is undertaken in collaboration with the DfE, taking into account feedback from the sector. The revised eligibility criteria are relevant to all those applying for the next cohort of QTLS, beginning in January 2025. The application window for this cohort opens on 12 August 2024 and closes on 24 October 2024.  

The revised eligibility criteria ensure QTLS remains fit for purpose as a high-quality professional status for those teaching in FE and Skills settings, sharing legal parity with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), which is required for those teaching in schools.  

This year’s changes strengthen the professional route for FE and Skills teachers and trainers, while teachers in schools should undertake QTS or the new teaching apprenticeship launching this autumn. In exceptional circumstances, individuals working in a school but teaching a technical subject to post-14 learners, or maths and English to post-16 learners, may be eligible for QTLS if they meet all other eligibility criteria. 

Prospective applicants for QTLS are encouraged to read the revised eligibility criteria, now available in full on the SET website, along with updated frequently asked questions (FAQs) and case studies ahead of the application window opening on 12 August. 

Dr Vikki Smith, Executive Director Education and Standards at the Education and Training Foundation, said: “Our annual reviews of QTLS criteria are carried out in collaboration with the DfE and based on continued consultation with the sector and SET members. These reviews enable us to ensure that QTLS upholds the same high quality and rigour as respective statuses such as QTS for teachers in schools. With over 27,000 practitioners having been awarded QTLS status since it was first introduced in 2008, this recognised and respected professional status continues to support FE and Skills practitioners' professional development, enabling them to demonstrate career progression and their commitment to excellence within the FE and Skills sector.”