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Category: States Assembly

Scrutiny Review Highlights Education Recruitment and Retention Issues

Dec 09, 2022

The Children, Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Panel has released a report following its review of the proposed Government Plan 2023-2026. The Panel’s report makes 37 findings and 18 recommendations, and highlights concerns about recruitment challenges in education settings. The Panel also recommends extending the school meals programme to offer free meals to all mainstream primary school children.

The Panel found that there are due to be 117 staff members recruited as part of an Inclusion programme, which will include new staff and also some existing staff put on new contracts. 

However, given the known challenges with education recruitment in the Island, the Panel is concerned about whether this level of recruitment is achievable in 2023.

Submissions to the Panel from a teaching union and a charity both echoed the urgent need to improve recruitment and retention of staff in schools and educational settings. These submissions also emphasised the intrinsic link between recruitment of staff to the required levels and the potential success of the Inclusion programme.

The Panel welcomes the commitment made by the Minister for Children and Education in the proposed Government Plan to expand upon the school meals programme, extending it from 500 to over 4,000 meals per day. Although the Panel is aware that pupils from income support families receive free school meals, it has recommended that the Minister should consider extending free school meals to all children in mainstream States primary schools in order to remove any stigma attached to means-tested meals.

Deputy Catherine Curtis, Chair of the Children, Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Panel commented: “Recruitment and retention of educational staff and specialist education staff is a key issue at the moment, and a concern which the Panel shares with union and charity stakeholders. We are recommending the Department of Children, Education, Young People and Skills (CYPES) should require all staff to undertake an exit interview at the time they leave the Department in order to gather constructive feedback and identify possible changes for the future.”

To read the report click here.

States Assembly Press Notice

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