Particularly tough subjects to fill are in maths, English and IT, with physics teachers in London the hardest to find and secondary maths teachers in the East second
Schools in England are facing a teacher recruitment crisis as nearly half of headteachers have unfilled posts, a survey has revealed.
Physics teachers in London are the hardest posts to fill and the second toughest to find are secondary maths teachers in the East of England.
Others which are proving difficult to find include key subjects such as mathematics, English and Information Technology, according to a survey by the education firm TES Global.
Schools in London, the South East and West Midlands are facing the biggest challenges in recruiting teachers compared to just three years ago.
Inner London, Yorkshire & Humber and North West England have experienced the most rapid falls in recruitment rates since 2012.
More than one in ten schools have increased the number of unqualified staff to take lessons to fill the gaps.
Almost half (46%) of the 250 head teachers in the survey have reported unfilled posts and more than a quarter (26%) are using more supply teachers.
Schools have also been recruiting teachers from overseas (9%) and using teachers to cover subjects in which they do not specialise (16%).
Schools recruiting for physics teachers in London currently receive just 2 applications on average compared to 8 in 2012.
And Schools recruiting for maths teachers in the East of England now receive just 3 applications on average compared to 7 in 2012.
Vic Goddard, principal at Passmores Academy in Harlow and star of TV show Educating Essex, said: “This is a challenge all over the country. Our proximity to London means that we are having to work incredibly hard to recruit teachers for shortage subjects, normally with very little success.
“I am having to think very creatively about how to attract good quality teaching talent for subjects like maths, whether that’s looking overseas or even looking at how we can give teachers somewhere to live to get them to join us.”
And Rob Grimshaw, chief executive of TES Global, said: “While we may not be facing a national crisis in teacher recruitment, it will certainly feel like it in some areas. Schools are having to become increasingly creative to find the talent they need.
A Department for Education (DfE) spokesperson said: “The number and quality of teachers in our classrooms is at an all-time high.
“New figures show we have recruited more trainees than last year and the number of former teachers coming back to the classroom has continued to rise year after year – from 14,720 in 2011 to 17,350 in 2014.
“The National Teaching Service will recruit 1500 outstanding teachers and school leaders to work in underperforming schools in challenging areas.”