GTC Scotland

The General Teaching Council for Scotland

Comhairle Choitcheann Teagaisg na h-Alba

GTC Scotland propose changes to teacher registration rules to further safeguard quality of education

6 October 2021

GTC Scotland, the independent professional and regulatory body for teachers in Scotland, is consulting on proposed changes to its registration rules. The changes seek to further safeguard the quality of education in Scotland by enhancing the integrity of the registration process and making the Register of Teachers more transparent.

The current Registration Rules were put in place in 2015 and set out GTC Scotland’s registration criteria, ongoing registration requirements and how the Register of Teachers operates. The Rules cover entry to the Register of Teachers as well as enhancements to registration for example, the award of Professional Standard for Headship.

Dr Pauline Stephen, Chief Executive and Registrar of GTC Scotland said, “Over the last six years there have been many changes to Scottish education, teaching and GTC Scotland’s own policy context, including the introduction of mandatory registration for teachers in the independent school sector and college lecturers, as well as a new requirement for headteachers in local authority and grant-aided schools to be awarded the Professional Standard for Headship.

“Brexit has also taken place, meaning the legal framework in relation to the recognition of professional qualifications between European member states is no longer in place. Recognising all of these factors and following internal review and engagement with key stakeholders, we are now consulting on proposed new Registration Rules to ensure that our Rules and associated policies are in line with the current practice and needs of the Scottish education system.

“This consultation raises important issues about who GTC Scotland registers on its Register of Teachers and what registration with GTC Scotland means. Teachers, lecturers, employers of teachers and lecturers, learners and members of the public all have important contributions to make, and I encourage them to feedback their views by taking part in this consultation.”

What is being proposed?

All aspects of the rules are being consulted on including registration categories, registration status, registration rules for individuals who qualified outside Scotland, routes to enhanced registration and maintaining registration.

The revised Rules aim to:

  • Provide a simplified registration framework that is easier to understand and has a clear evidence-based rationale;
  • Ensure that the categories and status of registration reflect the current needs of the education system;
  • Ensure that registration with GTC Scotland aligns with GTC Scotland’s mission, aims and values;
  • Widen the means by which GTC Scotland enable and encourage registrants to continue to grow as professionals through a revised ‘Additional Registration’ framework (replacing the current ‘Professional Registration’ route) and new ‘Accredited Specialism’ pathway.

College registration

In March 2018 Colleges Scotland Employers Association and the EIS - Further Education Lecturers’ Association (EIS-FELA) agreed that mandatory registration was part of the outcome of national bargaining (NJNC Circular 03/18). Registration with GTC Scotland now forms part of the agreed national terms and conditions of employment for all college lecturers under the new harmonisation arrangements.

In terms of registration in further education, the review of the Rules aspires to achieve two fundamental aims:

  1. To allow GTC Scotland to recognise Scottish teaching qualifications other than the TQFE as suitable for registration.
  2. To determine treatment of the existing college lecturer workforce who do not have a teaching qualification.

It is intended that the proposed changes will take effect from 4 April 2022.

The consultation can be accessed here and closes 5 January 2022.