In response to the Initial Teacher Training Bursaries for the year 2021-22 released this week (13 Oct) showing that funding for a number of key subjects has been cut, Trainee Secondary RE teacher, Mark Patrick (@MrPatrickRE), has started a petition demanding that the Department for Education (@EducationGovUK) re-think the bursaries and restore them, at least in part:
So far 1,544 have signed. Let’s get to 2,500! Sign this petition here
To the Rt Hon. Gavin Williams MP, Secretary of State for Education,
Initial Teacher Training Bursaries for the year 2021-22 have just been released and paint a damning picture for all potential Arts and Humanities teachers. Subjects including Religious Education, History, Geography, English, Art, Music and Design Technology have been entirely withdrawn, and other subjects such as MFL and Classics have been more than halved.
The high-quality teaching in the Arts and Humanities is essential to a well rounded, holistic education; and critical to a healthy, well ordered, and happy society. While I do not wish to diminish the importance of STEM subjects for our advancement; a society devoid of fine Art, Music, Poetry or Theatre, a society rife where no one knows where they came from, where they are going, or how and why someone else thinks the way that they do is naught but a dried husk of a society in which no one would truly wish to live.
While these bursaries do change on a year to year basis (as a current RE Trainee, I receive £9000), this decision (no doubt taken as a quick fix in the light of the COVID crisis) is grossly short-sighted, will do lasting damage to these subjects by putting off the highly qualified practitioners that they need and shows the utter contempt shown by some within the Department of Education for the Arts and Humanities.
We the undersigned demand that the Department for Education re-think the bursaries and restore them, at least in part.