Belfast Telegraph

Teacher workforce statistics in grant aided schools in the north of Ireland 2012/13

Stormont Executive press release - Department of Education

The Department of Education has published statistics relating to teacher numbers, teacher vacancies and pupil: teacher ratios in grant-aided schools in 2012/13.

The key findings are:

  • The number of full-time equivalent (FTE) teachers is 18,327.9. This represents a decrease of 524.3 from 18,852.2 in 2011/12.
  • The teacher headcount is 19,436, a decrease of 565 teachers from 20,001, in 2011/12. The proportion of teachers working part-time has been increasing gradually since 2008/09.
  • The proportion of teachers working in all schools who are male has been declining over the last three years.
  • In 2012/13, the proportion of teachers across the nursery, primary and preparatory sectors who are male is 14.9%, while in the secondary (non-grammar) and grammar sectors, 32.6% of teachers are male.
  • The median age of teachers is 40.9 years, an increase from 40.7 years in 2011/12. 2,394 teachers (12.3%) are aged under 30 and 386 (2.0%) are aged 60 years or above.
  • 56.2% of all principals are female and 43.8% are male. In the nursery and primary sectors, taken together, 38.8% of principals are male, while in the secondary (non-grammar) and grammar sectors, 65.3% of principals are male.
  • There were more vacancies in November 2012, than in the previous year, with a larger proportion of unfilled vacancies in nursery, primary and preparatory departments of grammar schools than in post-primary schools.
  • There were 936 teacher vacancies at the end of the academic year 2011/12, 703 (75.1%) of which had been filled by November 2012.
  • The overall Pupil: Teacher Ratio (PTR) in 2012/13 is 17.5, an increase of 0.6 from 16.9 in 2011/12.
  • The PTRs have risen this year for nursery schools, primary, secondary (non-grammar) and grammar schools. The PTR has decreased for the preparatory departments of grammar schools and remained static for special schools. The sector which had the biggest increase in PTRs was the primary with an increase of 0.7 pupils per teacher.
  • The average number of days lost per teacher due to sickness in all schools was 7.8.
  • Teacher substitution costs fell from £66million in 2008/09 to £57million in 2011/12 and have risen to £60million in 2012/13.
  • The number of substitution days worked by prematurely retired teachers has fallen to approximately 19,000 days in 2012/13. This is a decrease of approximately 49,000 days from approximately 68,000 days in 2008/09. This represents 4.4% of the total days worked, compared to 14.4% in 2008/9.

This statistical release may be accessed on the DE website at:

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