Supply Teaching

The system to provide supply teachers in Wales should be reviewed according to a National Assembly for Wales committee

The Children, Young People and Education Committee is recommending that the Welsh Government should consider alternative models to fill the gaps caused by teacher absence as it believes the current system, with one agency fulfilling a contract for all of Wales, isn’t working well enough.

Around 1,500 people completed a survey for the Committee to give a picture of how supply teaching works around the country.


It found that almost a quarter of school pupils are taught by a supply teacher at least once a week, and that 30 per cent are taught by a different supply teacher each time.

While 60 per cent of those surveyed said pupils carry on with the same work when taught by a supply teacher, 80 per cent said pupils learned less and that children’s behaviour deteriorated.

The Committee has also raised concerns around a lack of reliable data detailing the reasons for teachers taking sick leave. This, the Committee notes, could be addressed under new guidance issued by the Welsh Government while the inquiry was underway.

Plenary Debate

Read our Research Service’s blog ahead of the debate in Plenary:

In Brief – Supply teaching in Wales: Plenary debate

Watch the report being debated in Plenary below:

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