The Early Career Framework (ECF) came into force in September 2021. Within the framework, schools must provide comprehensive training alongside a nationwide support programme aligned to all areas within the Teachers’ Standards for what we used to call NQTs and NQTS +1 now renamed as Early Career Teachers (ECTs). This additional year of support comes with some additional funding to cover mentoring time (£2100 per pair of mentors and NQT+1/ ECT).
Within the ECF the Teachers’ Standards have been placed under umbrellas called Behaviour Management, Pedagogy, Curriculum, Assessment and Professional Behaviours. Each of these are broken down into specific statements to guide the ECTs knowledge and application of teaching skills. Early career teachers will work through this body of knowledge and guided practice as part of their ongoing training during their ECT years.
The ECF significantly raises the profile of mentoring in schools. Mentors are regarded as experts able to guide and support beginning teachers to fully understand and develop their professional role.
To guide schools in the delivery of the ECF, the DfE have funded six national lead providers to design and implement a comprehensive 2-year programme. Schools have the option to align to one of the six approved providers - by doing so they will have access to a fully funded programme and additional funding to facilitate participation. Alternatively, schools can create their own ECF programmes and access either DfE approved materials or their own programme models - but these options will only receive core funding.