High-flying private sector graduates are being encouraged to go back to their secondary schools as volunteer teachers, under a government-backed scheme loosely based on the concept of the Territorial Army.
The Territorial Teachers scheme, launched last week by training body Teach First, offers graduates five days off a year from their day jobs to teach students about business and the opportunities open to them.
Speaking at the scheme’s launch, schools minister Andrew Adonis said that the return of ambitious and successful professionals to schools would “contribute to raising pupil aspirations to the highest levels”.
The first company to sign up to the scheme is professional services firm Deloitte, which has three employees on the scheme and aims to take on another 10 this year.
Sarah Shillingford, graduate recruitment partner at Deloitte, said: “The skills Teach First participants gain – teamworking, improved communication skills, the ability to plan projects, motivate people and solve problems – are the abilities that we look for in the individuals we employ.”
James Townsend, president of Teach First, said he hoped more companies would follow Deloitte’s example and sign up to the programme to help tackle educational disadvantage.