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05.10.12

Twigg proposes students swap loan for teaching role

Students could have part of their tuition fee debt written off in exchange for becoming teachers in deprived areas, shadow education secretary Stephen Twigg has suggested.

At the last day of the Labour Party Conference, he said that improving the status of the profession was key to raising the standards of teaching. Twigg also pledged to expand the work of the Teach First charity, to get more students into the profession.

He plans to pilot the project before the next general election via Labour-run councils, but admitted there was much work to do on deciding how much debt would be involved.

Teacher numbers have fallen by 10,000 in one year under education secretary Michael Gove, Twigg said.

He told the conference: “We have the best generation of teachers ever. But it can be even better. We will establish a New Deal for Teachers. New rewards and new entitlements to training and with the responsibility to improve year on year.

“The key to One Nation Education is not the type of school but what happens in the classroom. Our education system is only as good as its staff.”

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