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Appropriate Body for early career teacher induction


Transforming support for early career teachers (ECTs) is at the heart of the Department for Education's (DfE) Teacher Recruitment and Retention Strategy (2019) which recognised that the steepest learning curve occurs in the first few years of a teacher’s career, and that in the past, too few teachers have had access to structured support or dedicated time for evidence informed professional development.

The Department is delivering this commitment through the national roll-out of the Early Career Framework (ECF)3 reforms from September 2021. The ECF reform will facilitate a step change in the structured support ECTs receive. The ECF clearly sets out what new teachers are expected to ‘learn about’ and ‘learn how to do’ based on expert guidance and the best available research evidence. The ECF was designed in close partnership with the sector and aims to support ECTs to develop their teaching practice, knowledge and working habits to help them establish a successful career in teaching.

From September 2021, induction for teachers joining the profession will be extended to two years and, underpinned by the ECF, will provide them with a structured programme of development, support and professional dialogue. These reforms sit at the heart of our strategy and will include an expectation that ECTs will have a dedicated mentor and a requirement that they have a reduced timetable in their first two years of teaching following qualification, giving them the time and support needed to focus on their professional development so that every new teacher is supported to lay the foundations for a fulfilling and rewarding career in teaching.

Appropriate bodies will play a key part in these reforms through their role in teacher induction. From September 2021, as well as ensuring that receive their statutory entitlements, they will ensure that regard is had to the amended statutory guidance and that ECTs are fairly and consistently assessed. Appropriate bodies will also be expected to check that ECTs are receiving a programme of support and training based on the ECF.

‘ECT’ means early career teacher, referring to a newly qualified teacher in their first or second year of induction.


All qualified teachers who are employed in a relevant school in England must, by law, have completed an induction period satisfactorily, subject to specified exemptions.

Independent quality assurance of statutory induction, through the role of the appropriate body, is important both for ensuring that schools provide adequate support for their early career teachers (ECTs), and that their assessment is fair and consistent across all institutions.

Statutory induction is the bridge between initial teacher training and a career in teaching. It combines a structured programme of development, support and professional dialogue, underpinned by the Early Career Framework, with monitoring and an assessment of performance against the Teachers’ Standards. The programme should support the early career teacher and provide them with the necessary training to ensure that they can demonstrate that their performance against the Teachers’ Standards is satisfactory by the end of the period. Induction should provide a foundation for ECTs and equip them with the tools to be an effective and successful teacher.

Appropriate Body services are changing. School-led provision that considers approaches to reducing teacher workload is in development by Bradford Teaching Schools Hub during the summer term 2021. This will provide a unique joint Appropriate Body and Early Career Framework offer for September 2021. Bradford Teaching School Hub will share more information about its coherent offer during the summer term 2021 so schools can undertake a due diligence process before committing to a service provider. Express an interest via the link below and we will contact you with further information in due course.


Providers of Appropriate Body services

The following organisations can act as the appropriate body:

  • A teaching school hub, such as Bradford Teaching School Hub, can provide a school-led statutory induction service and they have the unique advantage of also delivering the Early Career Framework (ECF) programme to early career teachers (ECT) and mentors

  • National Teacher Accreditation (NTA)

  • The Independent Schools Teacher Induction Panel (IStip) (for their members and associate or additional members only)

  • A local authority with which the school reaches agreement

  • The local authority in which the school is situated (if agreement cannot be reached between the school and one of the above)

From September 2021, induction becomes a two-year process rather than one year. Schools will need to select a rigorous and robust Appropriate Body (AB) to quality assure the indication and assessment of their ECT. In light of the changes, schools should seek to commission the services of an AB that offers more than the minimum requirements. The alignment of the AB service and ECF delivery will be an advantage that teaching schools hubs can offer.

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Statutory guidance

Schools should be familiar with Induction for early career teachers (England): Statutory guidance for appropriate bodies, headteachers, school staff and governing bodies (March 2021). This guidance includes:

  • information on the role of appropriate bodies
  • ways in which appropriate bodies can prepare for the changes to statutory induction
  • example forms to help appropriate bodies ensure early career teachers are receiving their statutory entitlements

Appropriate bodies will have a role in checking that early career teachers are receiving a programme of support and training based on the ECF. This will be alongside their current role ensuring that new teachers receive their statutory entitlements and are fairly and consistently assessed.

Schools who choose to deliver their own induction programmes, whether using Department for Education (DfE) accredited materials or the ECF itself, will need to provide information to their appropriate body to demonstrate that their programme fulfils statutory requirements. Schools should contact their appropriate body for further details of what will be required in the summer term. This will not be required of schools who use a provider-led programme (Full Induction Programme (FIP)).

What’s new in the Statutory Guidance from September 2021
  • The term early career teacher (ECT) replaces newly qualified teacher (NQT).

  • The standard length of induction has been increased from one school year to two school years.

  • In addition to the 10% timetable reduction that ECTs receive in their first year of induction, ECTs will also receive a 5% timetable reduction in the second year of induction.

  • Schools are expected to deliver an induction period that is underpinned by the Early Career Framework (ECF). Appropriate bodies will have a role in checking that an ECF-based induction is in place.

  • The role of the mentor has been introduced. The mentor will have a key role in supporting the ECT during induction and is separate to the role of the induction tutor.

  • There will be two formal assessment points, one midway through induction, and one at the end of the induction period. These will be supported by regular progress reviews to monitor progress, to take place in each term where a formal assessment is not scheduled.

  • In cases where ECTs working part-time can demonstrate that they have met the Teachers’ Standards, the appropriate body is able to reduce the length of the induction period and bring forward the final assessment point. This decision is only to be made in agreement with the ECT and once the ECT has completed a period covering, but not equivalent to, two school years.

  • The number of ad-hoc absences permitted has been extended, in line with the extended length of induction.

Early Career Framework

Find out about early career teachers (ECT) entitlement to a two-year Early Career Framework induction, how the Department for Education (DfE) is supporting schools and the programme of support provided by Bradford Teaching School Hub in partnership with Ambition Institute via the link below.

Fidelity checks

The appropriate body is not required to undertake fidelity checks for schools using the Early Career Framework Full Induction Programme (FIP) from a lead provider, such as Ambition Insititute via Bradford Teaching School Hub. Schools opting for the Core Induction Programme (CIP) or a school's own training and support programme based on the ECF (a school-based induction) will need to have their programme verified by the appropriate body. Below is a summary of what the appropriate body is expected to explore:

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