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Apply to join the international qualified teacher status pilot

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International qualified teacher status (iQTS) is a new, UK government-backed international teaching qualification which will be recognised by DfE as equivalent to English qualified teacher status (QTS) (via an amendment to regulations).

Read our policy paper for more information about the iQTS progamme.

How the pilot will work

DfE is now ready to work with a small cohort of accredited English ITT providers on a pilot of the iQTS qualification. We aim to work with approximately 5 ITT providers, who will in turn recruit between 20 and 30 iQTS trainees.

Throughout the pilot, the intention is to work closely with our pilot iQTS providers to deliver a training programme which meets:

the needs of candidates and providers
quality control standards set by English ITT providers and DfE

the practical, logistical and financial requirements to scale the training

The aims of the pilot are to test and learn from the delivery of iQTS in a range of settings in order to meet our overall goals.

We will take what we have learned to ensure the success of the wider roll-out.

Event
Dates
Applications for iQTS pilot open
17 November 2021
Last day to submit questions to DfE

13 December 2021 (noon)
Deadline for iQTS pilot applications
15 December 2021 (noon)

DfE evaluation of submissions
December 2021/January 2022

DfE announcement of iQTS pilot providers
January 2022
Applications open to candidates for iQTS

Early 2022

iQTS programme pilot training starts
Autumn 2022

Eligibility

To join the pilot, you must already be a provider accredited by DfE to deliver initial teacher training leading to qualified teacher status (QTS) in England.

We need to ensure that the quality of the iQTS pilot is of a high standard to maximise its success.

We will only accept applications from accredited providers who have an inspection rating of 1 (outstanding) or 2 (good) for their primary and/or secondary QTS provision.

We are unable to accept applications from recently accredited ITT providers who have not been inspected.

Apply to join the iQTS pilot

Read this guidance in full.

Download and complete the Application form for the international qualified teacher status (iQTS) pilot (ODT, 60.5KB).

Return the form by email to [email protected] using the subject line ‘iQTS pilot application’ by 15 December 2021.

Approvals process

Successful providers will be expected to recruit between 20 and 30 candidates each for the pilot from a range of countries and school settings.

Your application needs to demonstrate that you have:

a successful domestic ITT offer
sufficient capacity to design and deliver a high quality iQTS programme in a limited time period (that is, in time to recruit candidates for courses beginning in September 2022)
an established international teacher training programme or experience developing teachers overseas, for example a proven track record in delivering an iPGCE or similar
existing international relationships and/or partnerships to assist in the delivery of iQTS

Application marking scheme

Any part of your answer which exceeds the word limit for a particular question will not be considered.

If you score 2 or less on any question, your submission will automatically be removed from the process and will not be considered for iQTS pilot provider approval.

Question 2 is double weighted, this means we will double the score for this question, for example, if we score you 3 we will double that to 6.

The total potential score available is 35.

Application criteria

We’ll score your application using these application criteria.

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Assessment
Marks
Criteria
Excellent
5 (pass)
A comprehensive response that answers the question in full, addresses the key points and provides evidence to demonstrate that the ITT provider has the knowledge, experience, capability, resources and capacity to meet or exceed the requirement. Demonstrates an excellent understanding and high level of confidence with no concerns or omissions identified.
Good
4 (pass)
A good response that answers the question, addresses the key points and provides evidence to demonstrate that the ITT provider has the knowledge, experience, capability, resources and capacity to meet the requirement. Demonstrates a good understanding and level of confidence. The response may include some minor concerns or omissions but are not considered to present a risk or have an impact on service delivery.
Minor Omissions
3 (pass)
The response answers the question but may not have fully addressed the key points or provided enough evidence to fully demonstrate that the ITT provider has the knowledge, experience, capability, resources or capacity to meet the requirement. Demonstrates a satisfactory understanding and level of confidence. The response may include some concerns or omissions that are considered to present an element of risk or may have an impact on service delivery, but can be reasonably managed or resolved.
Major Omissions
2 (fail)
The response does not answer the question in full and fails to address all the key points or provide relevant evidence to demonstrate that the ITT provider has the knowledge, experience, capability, resources or capacity to meet the requirement. Demonstrates a lack of understanding or confidence. The response includes concerns or omissions that are considered to present a risk or would have an impact on service delivery that would require significant intervention to manage or resolve.
Unacceptable
1 (fail)
The response fails to answer the question, does not address the key points or provide evidence to demonstrate that the ITT provider has the required knowledge, experience, capability, resources or capacity and the requirement is unlikely to be met. Demonstrates a lack of understanding or confidence. The response includes significant concerns or omissions that are considered to represent an unacceptable level of risk and/or would have a detrimental impact on service delivery.
No Answer Provided
0 (fail)
No answer provided.

Deliverables

Over the course of the pilot providers must:

create an iQTS programme incorporating the Core Content Framework (CCF) which meets the iQTS criteria and allows trainees to meet the iQTS Teachers’ Standards
create a plan for how to reach the expected number of trainees in a range of countries and secure between 20-30 trainees each onto the pilot
produce a vision or mission statement for your iQTS programme
develop mentor training for in-school mentors to support trainees
ensure trainees can feed back on the programme to raise any concerns, and share this information on successes and challenges with DfE

cost your iQTS programme and give a breakdown of the fee for candidates, ensuring it is affordable in a range of settings
award iQTS to all trainees who have met the iQTS Teachers’ Standards at the end of the course, and submit data accordingly to the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA)

Support from DfE

DfE will support successful pilot providers throughout the pilot period and will:

appoint a relationship manager for each pilot provider to ensure that providers have a named individual from the iQTS programme team to discuss general queries and any concerns
schedule regular workshops to highlight progress, successes and any potential blockers iQTS pilot providers may have
set up a channel for easy communication between all parties, for example, Microsoft Teams or Slack
survey iQTS pilot providers, trainees, mentors and schools on the delivery of iQTS throughout the pilot year to learn and monitor progress in preparation for wider roll out in September 2023

DfE will host a start-up meeting for the pilot shortly after we notify the 5 successful providers.

Security of data

DfE expects you to treat and protect the iQTS DfE and personal data in the same way as your ITT data in line with UK GDPR requirements. You will need to provide a copy of your security plan if requested. It is agreed that statutory and other constraints on the exchange of information will be fully respected, including the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, and the Human Rights Act 1998, and any successor or amended legislation to the same.

Monthly reporting requirements

iQTS pilot providers will be expected to supply monthly reports on the following performance indicators.

Key performance indicators (KPIs)

Key performance indicator
Requirement
Design and create course content and methods of delivery
Course content incorporating the CCF which allows trainees to meet the iQTS Teachers’ Standards to be shared with DfE, along with a plan for how the qualification will be delivered (for example frequency and length of remote seminars, observations). We ask that this is completed for the pilot by summer 2022, with monthly reporting on course(s) development provided on request.
Number of trainees and number of host countries
To recruit 20 to 30 candidates from a range of countries and school settings (for example, British international school, English medium international school, bilingual international school, other private school, local state setting, other international setting).
Positive responses from the feedback loop with trainees
Regular feedback from trainees (for example through monthly surveys and termly focus groups), the results of which are fed back to DfE by the 15th of the following month. DfE should also be invited to one focus group per pilot provider in the pilot year. Additionally, DfE expects providers to put a route in place for trainees to feedback regularly on an ad hoc basis through a dedicated email address, and to post the [email protected] email address on their website so trainees know how to contact DfE and feedback directly.

Other data requirements:

development of course content and methods of delivery
the number of expressions of interest from potential candidates
the number of applications
the number of candidates interviewed
the number of candidates placed on a reserved list if numbers exceed 30
the total number of candidates offered a deferred place or alternative course, and what the alternative course is
the type of school the candidates are teaching in, for example. British international school, local state setting, other international setting etc

Non-identifying personal information such as:

country of birth
country of residence
first language
language they are teaching in
years of experience as a teacher
reason for wanting to undertake iQTS

level of qualifications held

Identifying personal information of potential trainees, iQTS candidates, overseas partners, mentors and school leaders for the purposes of DfE user research (it is the responsibility of the provider to obtain consent and share proof of this on request), for example:

name and email address
issues, risks and mitigations

Further information may also be requested.

If you cannot commit to the above KPIs and supply of management information as stated, do not submit a request to be considered for approval as an iQTS pilot provider.

Next steps

By submitting an application, providers commit to:

meeting the deadlines set out in our timeline
recruiting between 20 and 30 trainees
adhering to our Terms and conditions (PDF, 99.1KB, 1 page)

All submissions must be signed off by the person in your organisation who has overall responsibility for your ITT provision.

We are aiming to announce the providers we have decided to take forward into the pilot in December 2021 or January 2022. We’ll then ask participating providers to sign an agreement covering mutual expectations.

No DfE funding is available for the pilot or wider roll-out of the iQTS qualification. You will be participating at your own risk.

We’ll invite you to set course fees, with the expectation that the prices you set will be affordable in a number of global settings, so that iQTS is an attainable qualification worldwide. Read the approvals process section for more detail.

Withdrawal of iQTS pilot provider approval

Approved iQTS pilot providers must comply with the iQTS criteria and supporting information.

In all but the most serious cases of non-compliance, DfE will give pilot providers the opportunity to address the problem before we start the formal process of Withdrawing iQTS pilot provider approval status (PDF, 99.7KB, 2 pages).

For help with any aspect of the iQTS pilot application process, or if you have questions, concerns and feedback about iQTS email [email protected].

The answers DfE gives on specific issues may be shared more widely to ensure transparency and fairness.

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