The impact of Covid-19 on early career teachers

Most of the discussion on the impact of school closures has focussed on pupils, rightly so. But there is another group of learners in school who have been disrupted. Teachers.

Every year there are almost 30,000 new entrants into teacher training programmes. Most of these eventually go on to become Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs). For new trainees and NQTs, this school year has been very different to what they ever could have imagined in September.

Despite the already testing times, the biggest challenges for all teachers may still lie ahead. When all pupils can (safely) come through the school gates again, teachers will be handed the substantial challenge of plugging the learning loss – which could be as much as 6 months for the most disadvantaged – and supporting pupils who may have experienced trauma or loss.

Early career teachers and trainees could find themselves facing these challenges with only one full term of classroom teaching under their belt. How can we support them?

Through the RSA Academies’ Teaching Schools Alliance, we spoke to people training to be teachers in schools and new teachers in their first two years about how Covid-19 has impacted them.

They told us that despite the huge difficulties they faced, lockdown was helping them build resilience and creativity. These are key skills that could help them stay in teaching longer.

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