An EXTRA 370 university places for teacher training will help meet demand in primary schools, according to the education secretary.
A growing number of under-fives means there will be a focus on primary, while secondary teacher numbers will be maintained, Education Secretary Mike Russell said yesterday.
“We inherited an unsustainable position in teacher employment,” he said during a visit to the University of Aberdeen.
“We have addressed this by taking difficult decisions. As a result of those actions, we continue to see year-on-year improvement in teacher unemployment and the expert workforce planning group now recommends an increase in teacher training places, advice I am delighted to accept.
“I want every person who commits to teaching our children and young people to have job opportunities at the end of their study.
“Universities across Scotland will offer places, and I know our councils will continue to meet their commitment to maintaining teacher numbers in line with pupil numbers.
“We will continue to do all we can to support our teacher workforce and ensure their talent and skills are given their rightful place: in classrooms across Scotland.”
The additional places, backed with £2.9 million investment, brings the trainee teacher total to 2,770, the Scottish Government said.
Census data released last month showed 293,000 children were aged under five in 2011, an increase of 6 per cent from 2001.