Skip to main content

Maths news updates

Recruiting a maths teacher?

Awards of £20,000 and £30,000 available from the Education and Training Foundation

Following the initial call for proposals for the second phase of the project there remains limited funding available for colleges and training providers looking to recruit a maths graduate or graduate with good maths skills to teach in the further education and training sector.

The ETF is extending the Maths Incentive Scheme with funding for up to 25 awards; £20,000 is available to recruit an individual teacher or £30,000 for a small number of those who will be sharing their teaching expertise with other organisations.

Apply for funding on the website (Look under supporting you/ support for colleges and providers)

Enquiries to:

Applications for funding close on 10 April 2015.

Introduction of new maths A-levels put back a year TES, 1 December 2014

Ministers have agreed to delay the introduction of new maths A-levels by a further year after concerns were raised by the exams regulator, universities and headteachers. The decision to put back first teaching of the courses until September 2017 follows worries that the previous 2016 date would have left the first batch of pupils under-prepared for the new qualifications.They would have taken the existing maths GCSE, which is scheduled to be replaced by a new tougher version coming into schools in September. 2015. The Association of School and College Leaders has backed the call by the A-Level Content Advisory Board to delay the implementation of the new A level, and Ofqual had written to ministers warning that the current maths GCSE did not have the “building blocks” needed to prepare pupils for the problem-solving content in the new maths A-level. School reform minister Nick Gibb has now accepted delaying the course until September 2017.

Ofqual urges ministers to delay new maths A-level TES, 20 November 2014

The TES reported that experts have urged ministers to delay the introduction of new maths A-levels by a year, amid concerns that the first pupils to take the courses would have sat an old, "very different" GCSE in the subject. Ofqual and the A-level Content Advisory Board (ALCAB) are among those advising the Department for Education to put back the new maths courses to autumn 2017.

Reformed maths A-levels are currently slated for first teaching in schools in September 2016, just a year after the introduction of new, tougher, GCSE maths. This would mean that the first batch of teenagers to take the new A-level will have taken a GCSE exam which is significantly different from its successor.

A DfE spokesman said: "We have noted the advice from Alcab and ministers are considering it. We will make a decision in due course."

Government to review policy on all students 'passing' GCSE English and maths TES, 18 November 2014

The government is reviewing its policy of requiring all post-16 students who failed to get a C grade in GCSE English or maths to retake the qualification, it was announced today.

Speaking at the Association of Colleges’ annual conference in Birmingham, skills minister Nick Boles said he had “listened intently” to concerns about the way the government is implementing the new requirement. He announced he has commissioned the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) to review the best way to accredit maths and English skills.

New grants to tempt maths graduates to teach in FE TES, 27 August 2014

A new scheme which aims to raise standards of maths among young people and adults in the further education sector in England was launched today. Colleges and other FE providers can apply for grants of £20,000 to train maths graduates to teach the subject at GCSE level and above. The scheme will work alongside existing programmes, including the previously announced £10,000 ‘golden hello’ initiative for new graduate maths teachers, and will support the move for GCSEs to become the standard qualification in post-16 education from 2015. Trainees must be employed and commence their initial teacher training between September 1 2014 and July 31, 2015. Joy Mercer, director of policy at the Association of Colleges, welcomed the scheme. It follows a similar programme designed to help colleges and providers recruit specialist graduate maths teachers.

However FE Week reported a different story under the headline of “Math teacher training fund divides opinion after colleges with notice of financial concern are barred”. The £1.5 million ‘funding in-service maths teacher training in FE’ scheme was then criticised by the AoC after it emerged the money would not be available for colleges under notices of financial concern. FE Week understood that more than 10 per cent of colleges were thought to be under a notice of financial concern. A BIS spokesperson said the scheme was expected to fund training for more than 100 new maths teachers, and the impact would be reviewed before future commitments were made. FE Week said there were 981 providers with SFA allocations.

NIACE, the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education, has been commissioned by BIS and Dfe to co-ordinate consultations with learning providers across the sector about how the new GCSEs which include a revised grading structure and are more challening will be implemented. They have important implications for adult learners, education providers and employers. GCSEs in English and maths for all are considered the ultimate goal. There is more information about this consultation here, including information about seminars, calls for written submissions from the sector and information about how you can register your interest in taking part.

NANAMIC (National Association for Numeracy and Mathematics in Colleges) has offered a special discount on membership for those who have attended the GCSE Mathematics Enhancement Programme. It is just £15 and will cover the period until the end of July 2015. This will entitle you to £20 off this year’s and next year’s conference, plus £20 off any training you attend during the year. See their website for more details:

Millions unlocked to encourage the best to teach maths in further education:

Details of up to £20 million which is being made available to attract maths graduates into the sector.

Further education initial teacher training: bursary guide - academic year 2014 to 2015:

Eligibility and application guidance for further education initial teacher training bursaries.

16 to 18 core maths qualifications:

This document sets out the purpose, design process and characteristics of level 3 core maths qualifications, including expectations of their size, content, grading and assessment, and an outline timetable for qualification development and accreditation.