Diagnostic Analysis of the Effect of Retention and Turnover on the Teaching Workforce

Against a backdrop of increasing pupil numbers and teacher shortages in key subjects, understanding the dynamics of the teacher workforce is important to assist policymakers and system leaders in formulating effective responses to this important issue.

Funded by a grant from the Nuffield Foundation, NFER is carrying out a major research programme looking at a number of key factors driving teacher retention, and making recommendations for policymakers and schools leaders.

We use data from the School Workforce Census to determine key factors associated with a teacher leaving the profession (retention), moving within the sector (turnover) and returning to the profession.

We also use data from the Understanding Society survey to understand the external and personal factors that are associated with teacher labour market behaviour. Using data analysis and stakeholder interviews, we also draw comparisons between teaching and other public sector professions, particularly nursing and policing.

A series of evidence-based outputs (see below) were produced since 2017 and the final report in this programme, published on Tuesday 30 October 2018, is available to download here.

For up-to-date news of our work in this project, follow us on Twitter: @TheNFER and get involved in the conversation using #TeacherWorkforce