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Suffolk schools are saving vital funds by using free Teaching Vacancies recruitment service

Schools across Suffolk are leading the way in signing up to the Department for Education (DfE)’s free job search and listings service, Teaching Vacancies, which launched in April 2019 to help schools and teachers with recruitment.

The county has 63 per cent of schools signed up to use the service.

Suffolk is following in the footsteps of Cambridgeshire which has 100 per cent of their schools signed up.

St Martha's RC Primary School in King's Lynn is part of the St John the Baptist Multi Academy Trust that is using the Teaching Vacancies service.
St Martha's RC Primary School in King's Lynn is part of the St John the Baptist Multi Academy Trust that is using the Teaching Vacancies service.

This ensures that ahead of the main recruitment cycle when teachers look for their next career move, local schools are well placed to recruit cost effectively.

The service helps schools fill teaching vacancies in the region enabling them to advertise teaching roles free of charge, saving significant time and money. With the service used by job-seeking teachers across the country, it also promises to help schools attract new talent into the region with any advertised roles visible to job-seeking teachers nationally.

Teaching Vacancies was developed in response to demand from headteachers’ to address the expenditure of up to £75 million that was being spent on teacher recruitment advertising.

By using the service, schools can save money on recruitment advertising so that they can spend it where it counts most - in the classroom.

For schools, it also puts them in control of their own recruitment.

They can post as many times as they want and directly upload and edit for free.

They can also monitor the success of their post and track how many people have seen it.

St John the Baptist is a Multi Academy Trust (MAT) with schools in Norfolk, north Suffolk and Peterborough.

The trust is currently made of nine primary schools and one secondary school.

Commenting on Teaching Vacancies, Brian Conway (CEO) said: “Having so many schools sit under the same umbrella trust has meant that teacher recruitment can be a large chunk of our expenditure.

"We’re excited about the impact Teaching Vacancies could have on this. We’ve started using the service to advertise roles across schools within our MAT.

"As it operates nationally, it means we’re able to access a wider talent pool, meaning we have the best opportunity of getting top teachers joining our staff and teaching our pupils.”

For job seekers, Teaching Vacancies takes the hassle out of searching through lots of jobs sites, by consolidating it into one easy-to-use service making it a good time to be a teacher in the region.

"Once registered, job seekers can see all jobs at a glance and be alerted to roles that meet their search criteria and working pattern, as soon as they are advertised, ensuring that they do not miss their next career move.

"The service allows job seekers to filter roles based on criteria including location, job title, education phase, working pattern and NQT suitability.

For those looking to work flexibly – more than one in 10 (13 per cent) of all jobs advertised in the region to date have been listed with flexible working as an option and this rises to one in five (20 per cent) for Suffolk.

The Department is also working with schools in Fenland and East Cambridgeshire, Norwich and Ipswich Opportunity Areas to drive down the cost of recruitment advertising and to improve the number of quality candidates applying for teaching roles.

Each of the Government’s 12 Opportunity Areas receive a share of £72 million for a tailored plan to improve social mobility for children and young people, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

A DfE spokesperson said: “This is a good time to be a teacher in the East of England.

"We are delighted with the uptake of Teaching Vacancies and the positive impact this promises for our schools.

"If schools and job seekers continue to use the service, we can change the way recruitment happens in schools and make a real difference where it matters most.”

School Standards Minister Nick Gibb said: “Almost three-quarters of schools in the East of England have signed up to our Teaching Vacancies service, enabling them to advertise all of their teaching vacancies completely free of charge.

“This is just one of the ways that the Government is helping schools to make the most out of their funding so they can maximise the money they have to spend in the classroom, building on the £14 billion we are investing in schools over the next three years.”

Nationally, teaching vacancies has already been welcomed by over 60 per cent of schools, advertising over 16,000 vacancies.

Schools and teachers interested in finding out more should go to: gov.uk/teaching-vacancies

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