College of Teaching receives up to £5 million in staged seed funding

The College of Teaching, the new independent and voluntary professional body for the teaching profession, has welcomed the announcement of support and up to £5 million staged seed funding outlined within the Department for Education’s Educational Excellence, Everywhere white paper, presented to parliament today by the Secretary of State for Education, Rt Hon Nicky Morgan MP.

The College of Teaching is determined that the teaching profession should take this opportunity to establish a professional body matching the best that exists in medicine, law, engineering, accountancy and all the other professions in our country. This pledge provides the seed funding required to establish the College of Teaching as an authoritative voice of professionalism over the next five years.

Claire Dockar, Chair of the College of Teaching and classroom teacher at Lipson Co-Operative Academy in Plymouth, said: “The need for an independent, sector-led professional body for teaching has never been greater. This funding provides the basis for the College quickly to become a valued asset across the sector, providing research-led standards and expectations and a strong professional community.

“We welcome the government’s recognition that the College must be wholly independent. The seed funding we have been promised today will be used to create an independent, authoritative body of which every teacher can be proud.”

Sinead Gaffney, classroom teacher in Sheffield, said: “Recognising and valuing the expertise of experienced, engaged teachers is fundamental, particularly in the current retention crisis. This makes the College of Teaching’s commitment to professional knowledge and development welcome.

“It is important that teachers are supported to develop their practice in ways, which have clear and proven value for learners. The College could have an important role to play in building our professional identity and self-confidence towards this end as well as sharing knowledge amongst a professional community.”

 The College of Teaching will take forward the following:

  • Launching a membership offer in 2016 that will increase teachers’ access to and use of high quality evidence – including the establishment of a new, peer-reviewed British education journal.
  • This offer will be informed by The Big Staff Meeting national membership consultation that took place with teachers and educators between November 2015 and March 2016.
  • Recruiting a Chief Executive and implementation team.
  • Running national and regional events and conferences to provide a forum for mobilising knowledge including The Big Summit event, taking place in the Autumn to debate evidence-informed practice between classroom practitioners and international academics.
  • Developing and growing the emerging regional network will support teachers close to where they live and work, building on the developing hubs in Lancashire, Cumbria, Oxfordshire and Sheffield amongst others.
  • Continuing discussions with strategic partners, particularly with subject associations and learned societies.

Sir Kevan Collins, Chief Executive of the Educational Endowment Foundation (EEF), said: “Establishing a College of Teaching and getting it off the ground is an opportunity that we can’t miss. Today’s announcement is good news for the profession and the wider education sector and I hope the College will take up an important position and stand at the intersection of research, professional development and individual teachers.

“The EEF is committed to provide teachers with reliable evidence, support and guidance and looks forward to working with the College to improve education outcomes for all.”

 To download the Educational, Excellence Everywhere paper, visit

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For Further Information

For further information, or to arrange an interview with College of Teaching representatives, please contact Laura Smith, on / 07467 945848.

 Notes to Editors

 About the College of Teaching and Claim Your College campaign

  • The College of Teaching will not have a regulatory role, will be independent of government and membership will be entirely voluntary. The College aims to give teachers equality of status with other professions by advancing high standards, recognising excellence and promoting evidence-based practice and policy.
  • This investment in the College of Teaching is the latest step in a process of widespread consultation and collaboration that began in 2012 and ultimately led to the formation of the Claim Your College campaign and the development of the start-up proposal The profession’s new College of Teaching.
  • The coalition and proposal secured cross-party political support and was supported by a 450-strong coalition of individuals and organisations including a range of teachers, headteachers, unions, subject associations and learned societies alongside wider education organisations.
  • In 2015, the Secretary for State, endorsed the vision set out by the Coalition and announced that the Claim Your College proposal was the preferred expression of interest following the A world-class teaching profession consultation, to establish an independent College of Teaching.
  • Beyond the start-up phase, funding for the College of Teaching will ultimately come from its membership.
  • A major survey undertaken by The Education Company last year of 13,000 respondents (75% being classroom teachers and subject leaders) revealed that 80% of respondents surveyed viewed the ambitions of the College of Teaching as valuable. A majority of respondents supported the acceptance of government start-up support provided it is made available as a ‘no strings’ grant and does not compromise independence.
  • The top five membership benefits ranked “extremely valuable” or “valuable” in this survey were:
  • Professional knowledge sharing – 91.2%
  • A common code of practice – 87.5%
  • Professional development – 85.9%
  • Recognition by schools – 84.1%
  • Professional standards – 82.0%.
  • The original Claim Your College proposal titled The profession’s new College of Teaching: A proposal for start-up put forward by the Claim Your College coalition can be viewed here:
  • The proposal built on a Blueprint for a new College of Teaching, which was published by The Prince’s Teaching Institute (PTI) in February 2014. The Blueprint resulted from a workshop held by the PTI in September 2012, and two 2012 publications: Towards a Royal College of Teaching (RCS) and Great Teachers: attracting and retaining the best (Education Select Committee, May 2012).
  • The Claim Your College coalition was originally initiated by the existing College of Teachers, the PTI, the Teacher Development Trust and the SSAT in collaboration with practising teachers and school leaders.
  • To view the history of the College of Teaching to date, including the evolution of the Claim Your College campaign, visit
  • To find out more about the College of Teaching, visit
  • Follow the College of Teaching on Twitter @CollOfTeaching #builditwithus #ClaimYourCollege
  • Like the College of Teaching on Facebook