The chief inspector's view of supply teaching in primary schools

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Supply teachers are doing a good job in primaries, although the quality of teaching of some temporary staff continues to be a concern, says Mike Tomlinson, the chief inspector of schools.

Nearly half of lessons taught by supply teachers in primary schools were judged to be good or better. But nearly 10 per cent of lessons taught by supply staff were found to be unsatisfactory – twice the proportion of permanent staff.

Few supply teachers in primary schools have received training in the national literacy and numeracy strategies which form a key part of the school day for all five to 11-year-olds. However, some primary schools had tried to maintain the continuity of their pupils' education by using the same temporary teachers to plug gaps in their staff.