NQT (ECT) Induction FAQsAnswers to popular questions relating to Induction

NQT (ECT) Induction FAQs

Below you will find answers to the most popular questions relating to statutory NQT (ECT) Induction in England.  If you cannot find the answer you are looking for or you believe any of the information below to be incorrect, feel free to contact us or leave feedback at the bottom of this page.


I am currently undergoing my final induction term, will my induction end early due to COVID-19 or will it be extended if school has closed or I have been absent through illness, shielding or self-isolation ?

No.  The government have stated in their COVID-19 guidance that induction will continue on a 'normal' timeframe.  Absences related to COVID-19 will not cause induction to be extended.

We opted-in to early rollout of the ECF this year, will our current NQTs (ECTs) be subjected to a 2-year induction? 

No.  Induction will remain at 1-year for those NQTs currently undergoing induction e.g., if your NQT is full time and they started induction in Sept 2020, they will be due to complete induction around 23/7/2021 (FTE for part-time NQTs).  ECF support will continue into the 2nd year with the provider you chose to work with during early rollout (Note:  statutory induction assessments will not be required or completed in the 2nd year as they will no longer be NQTs undergoing induction).

What about those who did not start at the beginning of September e.g., they started in January or April?

Induction still remains at 1-year.  The new arrangements apply to all those starting induction from September 2021 onwards. 

What about those who have partially completed induction, but they are not currently employed? 

The DfE have set a deadline of September 2023 for those who had already started/partially completed induction - they have until September 2023 to fully complete under the current arrangements e.g., a 1-year induction.  Those who have not fully completed induction by the above deadline date will be required to undergo a 2-year ECF-based induction minus time already served. 

Will the ECF support continue into the 2nd year for those who opted-in to early rollout this year?

Although statutory induction remains at 1-year for those who opted-in, access to ECF support/materials should continue into the 2nd year but you will need to contact whichever ECF provider you chose to work with for further details. 

We will not have ECTs in September - is there anything we still need to do ? 

If you will not be employing ECTs in September, there isn't anything need to do at this stage, but it will be important to keep yourself familiarised with the upcoming changes and have an idea of your preferred ECF delivery route/provider/AB should you employ ECTs in the future. 

Can we still offer ECTs a 1-year contract or does it need to be 2-years under the new arrangements?

There are no restrictions placed on the length of contracts that can be offered to ECTs but the minimum that would be eligible for statutory induction to take place remains at 1 term (FTE for part-time ECTs). 

How does a 2-year induction affect an ECTs pay progression ? 

The new arrangements will not have any adverse impact on pay progression - ECTs can still progress up the pay scale as current arrangements allow. 

The revised statutory guidance states ECTs must have an Induction tutor
 and a mentor - what's the difference ? 

Induction Tutors will have responsibility for overseeing induction e.g. lesson observations, review meetings, support and monitoring including completion of formal assessments and progress reviews when they are due

Mentors will be responsible for day-to-day support, 1:1 mentoring, coaching sessions and where applicable will take part in mentor training as part of the ECF

Can the tutor and mentor be the same person ? 

The DfE expect these roles to be held by different individuals unless in exceptional circumstances e.g., staff absence or in small schools where capacity may be limited

I do not have Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), can I do induction ?

No.  QTS is a legal requirement as outlined by the government.  For full details regarding the award of QTS, please visit the government Teaching Regulation Agency website

I do not know my teacher reference number (TRN), where can I get my number ?

Teacher reference numbers are usually issued when you begin your training - if you do not know your TRN, please visit the government Teaching Regulation Agency website for further instruction.

I trained in Northern Ireland (or Rep of Ireland/Scotland) do I need to have QTS to undergo induction ?

Yes.  Before you can apply for NQT positions in England, you must obtain the necessary clearance from the government Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA).  The TRA will determine whether or not you are required to complete a statutory induction period.  For full details including the steps you need to take to obtain QTS and a valid Teacher Reference Number, please visit: Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)

I have QTLS, can I do induction ?

No. If you have been awarded QTLS and are a full member of the Society for Education and Training (SET) you are exempt from induction. Please see the links below for full details:

Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) or Society for Education and Training (SET)

I have Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS), can I do induction ?

No.  If you have EYTS your are not eligible for induction.  Please visit: Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS) for full details.

I am an NQT but my school/college have not registered me for induction, can I backdate my Induction ?

No.  Induction cannot be backdated.

Who makes the final decision as to whether or not I have met the required standards to pass induction ?

The Appropriate Body has the final say as to whether or not an NQT has met the required standards to pass induction.  The AB has to satisfy itself that there is sufficient evidence within your end of term assessments to suggest that you have met all of the standards by the end of induction.

Is there a deadline by which newly qualified teachers (NQTs) must start and finish induction ?

No. NQTs are encouraged to start their induction as soon as possible after gaining qualified teacher status (QTS), but there is no set time limit for starting or completing induction. If significant time has elapsed between gaining QTS and starting induction, or there is a significant gap between teaching posts during the induction period, NQTs can consider undertaking refresher training.  Please visit - Returning Teachers

Can a newly qualified teacher do supply work before starting induction ?

Yes, a qualified teacher, who has not completed an induction period, can undertake some short-term supply work in a relevant school (maintained school, maintained nursery, PRU and non-maintained special school) but this is limited to five years from the date that QTS was awarded.

See paragraphs 2.13-2.16 of the Statutory guidance on induction for NQTs in England.

Can an NQT do induction as a supply teacher ? 

Yes, NQTs can start or continue their induction whilst doing supply work so long as the period of employment is for a minimum contract length of one full induction term.  This cannot be a series of short term supply contracts adding up to a term as induction must be planned and structured in advance and must take place in a stable environment to allow for fair and accurate assessment.  A supply teacher, on a contract of one term or more, should be treated in the same way as a permanent employee by the headteacher for the purposes of induction.

How long will I be able to work as a supply teacher before I must start my induction ?

NQTs can undertake short-term (duration of less than a term) supply work for a maximum of 5 years from the date of being awarded QTS.  This will apply to all NQTs regardless of the amount of short-term supply teaching that has been undertaken previously.

What happens after the five year time limit ?

When the five year limit is reached, a teacher cannot undertake any further supply work (of any duration) in a maintained school, non-maintained special school, maintained nursery school or pupil referral unit unless it is a post in which the NQT is employed for a term of more and is able to undertake induction on a full or part-time basis.

See paragraph 2.13-2.16 of the Statutory guidance on induction for NQTs in England.

Will it be possible to get an extension to the five years ?

No, because the period that NQTs can serve as short-term supply teachers has been significantly increased and because it is important for NQTs to be able to serve induction as soon as possible after completing their initial teacher training. Therefore, there will be no extensions available from 1 September 2012.

What if I am currently serving an extension period agreed with my LA which will not have finished by 1 September 2012 ?

All extensions in place on 1 September 2012 will cease on that day. Of course, if you are still within five years from the award of your QTS, you will still be able to undertake short-term supply until that time limit is reached. 

Are there any changes to long-term supply rules ?

No, NQTs will still be able to undertake supply posts lasting a term or longer but these must be suitable for induction to take place and, if an NQT is employed in such a post they would be expected to undertake induction. There is no time limit on these posts.

What is a suitable post to serve induction ?

The headteacher/principal and appropriate body must ensure that the duties of the NQT, his or her supervision, personal development and the conditions under which the NQT works are such as to enable there to be a fair and effective assessment of the NQT's conduct and efficiency against the teachers’ standards. An important issue at the start and throughout the period is to ensure the suitability of the NQT's post. For further criteria see paragraph 2.17 -2.18 of the statutory guidance on induction for NQTs in England.

I am a teacher from Australia, Canada, New Zealand or USA, can I teach in a school in England without having to serve induction ?

Teachers who have trained outside of the EEA will need to visit the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA) website for information and guidance relating to requirements and qualifications needed to teach in England.  The TRA will determine whether or not you are exempt from the requirement to complete an induction period.

For full details, please visit the following link to the TRA website:   Non-EEA Nationals

I did my teacher training in Scotland/Ireland/Wales. Can I complete my Induction in England ?

Teachers who have trained outside of England and Wales must obtain the necessary clearance from the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA) before applying for positions in maintained schools and non-maintained special schools in England.  

The TRA will determine whether or not you are required to complete a statutory induction period.

For full details including requirements and the steps you need to take, please visit one of the following links to the TRA website:

Teachers trained or recognised in Northern Ireland or Scotland

Teachers trained or recognised in Rep of Ireland and other EEA member states

Teachers trained in Wales

Can an NQT do induction in an independent school ?

Independent schools (including academies and city technology colleges) who wish to offer an NQT who has been awarded QTS the chance to complete statutory induction must provide a suitable post and programme that will help the NQT to continue to meet the teachers’ standards. 

Can an NQT undertake induction in an age group and subject they have not trained in ?

Yes. When an NQT has qualified teacher status they can teach any age range or subject, irrespective of training. However, it is advisable, in order to avoid complications, that NQTs undergo induction in the phase/subject they have trained in as teaching outside their age range and subject is unlikely to offer the best context for induction. An NQT in this situation is likely to need additional support to meet, and demonstrate they are meeting, the teachers’ standards.

I am a part-time NQT serving induction. How long would I have to wait for my first formal assessment ?

An NQT undertaking induction in a part-time post would be required to serve the equivalent of an academic year for a full-time teacher. 

Therefore, as an example, if a teacher was filling a 0.5 contract, two school terms would equate to one induction term.  To fully complete induction on a 0.5 contract, it would equate to two academic years.

I have been teaching successfully at an independent school for a number of years. I now wish to take a post in a maintained school. Will I have to serve induction ?

Yes.  From 1 September 2012 appropriate bodies (usually a local authority or from 1 September 2012 a Teaching School) and the school will be able to consider reducing the induction period to take into account experience and evidence obtained from your previous post that you are meeting the required Teachers’ Standards. An induction period in these circumstances could possibly be reduced to a minimum of one term and will be considered on a case by case basis.

How is induction affected by maternity leave ?

If an NQT has a break in her induction that includes statutory maternity leave, she can choose whether or not to extend induction by a period equivalent to the statutory maternity leave. Outstanding assessments should not be made until she returns to work and has had the opportunity to decide whether to extend induction. Any extension request must be granted.

If an NQT chooses not to extend her induction period following a period of statutory maternity leave, her performance will still be assessed against the teachers’ standards. Individuals in this situation should seek advice from their headteacher/principal, induction tutor, appropriate body or an appropriate teacher union professional association before making this decision.

See paragraph 3.7 of the Statutory guidance on induction for NQTs in England.

What are the rules on paternity leave ?

The induction regulations make no special provision for paternity leave. Paternity absence should be counted as normal absence under the 29 day rule. Absence of 30 days or more requires an aggregated extension to the induction period equal to the period of absence.

Will my induction be extended if I have been absent ?

The induction period is automatically extended prior to completion when an NQT's absences during the entire induction period total 30 days or more. In these circumstances the induction period must be extended by the aggregate total of days absent, for example if the NQT is absent for a total of 35 days, the induction period is extended by 35 days. Please note that when the NQT works part-time, only absences that fall when the NQT is contracted to work should be counted.

See paragraph 3.5 of the statutory guidance on induction for NQTs in England.

For absences relating to COVID-19, please see the guidance published by the government

Can an NQT teacher who fails their induction period appeal against the decision ?

An NQT can appeal to the TRA by sending a notice of appeal within 20 days, beginning with the date the NQT received notice of the appropriate bodies decision – this can be a letter. Section four of the Statutory guidance on induction for NQTs in England. provides more information on the appeals process.

I have failed my Induction, am I allowed to teach ?

If you have failed induction and decided not to appeal the decision or you have appealed but the appeal is disallowed, your name will appear on the list of teachers who have failed satisfactorily to complete an induction period, maintained by the TRA on behalf of the Secretary of State. You will not be able to teach in a maintained school. Independent schools including academies, Free Schools and FE institutions do not legally require their teachers to complete induction.

You can check your official teacher status and record online by visiting the government Teacher Self-Serivce portal

When an NQT has passed induction how long should a local authority retain their records ?

It is recommended that local authorities and schools/colleges retain records for at least six years (this is in line with the guidance on performance management). After that time they should follow their own internal policy on data retention.


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