On Tuesday, the government announced the withdrawal of bursaries for certain post-graduate teacher training courses.
There is concern that this will have a negative effect on those hoping to start teacher training in an Arts subject
From October 2019, subjects including English, Humanities and the Arts previously came with a £9,000 – £15,000 bursary – a non-repayable government grant for applicants, but there is now no financial support for these courses.
There is concern that this will have a negative effect on those hoping to start teacher training in an Arts subject because their funds are now limited.
One prospective trainee teacher, hoping to start a PGCE in History, spoke to Impact about how this will affect their future plans.
Wanting to remain anonymous, they said how they found out about the news second-hand and were surprised as applications for 2021/22 courses opened earlier this week.
Giving their reaction, they described their anger as “not everyone’s bursaries have been scrapped, so anyone who wants to do any Arts subjects needs to seriously think about whether they can afford to train as a teacher”.
There has also been severe backlash this week following an advert encouraging people working in the Arts to retrain in other careers
They went on to say that the government’s decision “makes the whole process more difficult” as they will “only receive a student loan and will need to pay for transport to placements on top of living expenses.” They also expressed their frustration over the government’s perceived intention to specifically attack the Arts.
The frustration that it is the Arts and Humanities that have had their support axed comes at a time where the government has faced criticism over their treatment of the Arts sector.
There has also been severe backlash this week following an advert encouraging people working in the Arts to retrain in other careers, which has since been scrapped. Chancellor Rishi Sunak came under criticism for reportedly suggesting that people in the arts should retrain and find other jobs.
The government have said that the changes implemented reflect “both recruitment to date and the future need for teachers in each subject”. They also emphasised how the subjects that offer bursaries are listed as “priority” ones.
The Minister for School Standards Nick Gibb told BBC’s Newsbeat that “Teaching remains an attractive proposition, which is evidenced by the significant increase in applications over the last few months, and these financial incentives are set to attract those to the hardest to recruit subjects”.
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