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More teachers have top degree

Almost three-quarters of new graduate teacher trainees in England have a 2:1 degree or better, with a higher proportion than ever entering the profession with a first class degree.

Statistics published by the Department for Education (DfE) showed that 17% of graduates starting teacher training this academic year had first class degrees and 73% had a 2:1 or above

But the figures indicated difficulties in attracting would-be teachers for some subjects, with just 44% of the target number of design and technology trainees, 53% for social studies and 67% for physics.

The annual Initial Teacher Training (ITT) intake showed there were 26,218 people on postgraduate programmes out of 32,543 new entrants.

Charlie Taylor, chief executive of the National College for Teaching and Leadership, said: " It is great news that we continue to see the quality of new entrants into teaching increasing year on year, with levels of trainees holding a first class degree at an all-time high.

"We want the best and brightest teachers in our schools to ensure pupils have the right skills needed to succeed in life and to help the UK compete in the global economy - this is a vital part of our plan for education.

"There is clear evidence that teachers make the biggest difference to pupil attainment and a key component of this is excellent subject knowledge. That is why we are offering generous tax-free bursaries and prestigious scholarships to help us recruit the nation's most talented graduates."

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