The Learned Societies’ Group on STEM Education (LSG), hosted by the RSE, has responded to the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) proposals for revising the entry requirements for those entering initial teacher education in Scotland. Despite a range of sources having reported on primary teachers as lacking confidence in teaching science, there is currently no requirement for those aspiring to become primary teachers to have any level of formal science qualification. To help ensure that primary teachers have a grounding in scientific concepts and methods, the LSG believes that those entering teacher education programmes should be expected to achieve at least one SCQF level 5 qualification (e.g. National 5) in a science as a minimum requirement.

As initial teacher education is the starting point in a teacher’s career development, it is important that teachers are able to access high-quality and continuous professional learning covering both subject-specific knowledge and pedagogy throughout their teaching careers. Sustained funding and support is needed to action the step-change in career-long professional learning in STEM for teachers envisaged by the Scottish Government and its partners.

The full LSG submission is available here.