This letter from the National College for Teaching and Leadership was forwarded to providers on 31st January 2018

Dear colleague,

On 29 January 2019, Nick Gibb, Minister of State for School Standards, wrote to you about initial teacher training recruitment for 2018/19. In the letter, the Minister noted the challenging recruitment position this year and announced the extension of the current allocations approach for 2018/19 into 2019/20. We are writing to provide further detail on this announcement. We are also pleased to announce the opportunity for School Direct lead schools to request additional places for Primary School Direct (salaried) for 2018/19.

2019/20 ITT Allocations

The letter from Minister Gibb set out that we will continue for 2019/20 the allocations approach used for 2018/19. This means that with the exception of Primary School Direct (salaried) and PE (all routes), all subjects will be unlimited for 2019/20. We will continue to monitor recruitment throughout the cycle, and will confirm at a later stage the position on Primary School Direct (salaried) and PE (all routes).

You will want to be aware that we are retaining for 2019/20 our ‘stop’ power for unlimited subjects. In the unlikely event that there is significant over-recruitment in any unlimited subject for 2019/20, we reserve the right to stop recruitment. There will be no change to the ‘stop’ process, which means we would give School Direct lead schools and ITT providers a minimum of five working days’ notice to process applications in the event of a ‘stop’ notice. You will know that we have not used this power to date, and we do not expect to use it this year.

As in previous years, we will operate an allocations window in summer 2018. During this window, you will still be required to inform us of subjects and routes in which you plan to offer ITT for 2019/20, so that we can monitor availability of courses, and to allow you to list your courses on UCAS. Allocations to Primary School Direct (salaried) and PE, should they remain fixed, will be informed by your requests. Full details and guidance will be published in summer 2018.


The deadline for making an Expression of Interest for Primary apprenticeship places has been extended until Friday 16 February 2018. Schools that did not request places in June of 2017 should contact NCTL, specifying the name of their School Direct lead school, name of their accredited provider and an indication of the number of primary apprenticeship places they wish to offer. Expressions of Interest should be sent to teaching.apprenticeship@education.gov.uk.

Initial Teacher Training Allocations 2018/19 – Primary School Direct (salaried)

As outlined in the2018 to 2019 ITT Allocations Methodology, Primary School Direct (salaried) is a fixed subject. In the methodology, we also advised that School Direct lead schools and ITT providers would be notified where any changes to allocations were planned. Primary School Direct (salaried) remains a fixed subject for 2018/19 but we are giving School Direct lead schools the opportunity to request more places.

We are aware that a number of School Direct lead schools may wish to increase their Primary School Direct (salaried) allocation. For example:

  • A school may have applications from three good candidates but only have two allocated places. An additional place would enable the school to make an offer to the third applicant;
  • A School Direct partnership may have grown since their initial request for 2018/19 places;
  • A School Direct partnership has a steady volume of applicants and is likely to exceed their current allocation.

Process for requesting additional Primary School Direct (salaried) places:

If you would like to request additional Primary School Direct (salaried) places for 2018/19, you will need to contact us with evidence that your current allocation is insufficient. The attached form should be used to outline your rationale.

We will review requests on a case-by-case basis. Approval of requests will be confirmed by the Allocations team via email.

We will continue to monitor recruitment throughout the cycle, and will inform all ITT providers and School Direct lead schools should we no longer be in a position to offer additional Primary School Direct (salaried) places.

Kind regards,

The Allocations Teams

National College for Teaching and Leadership

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