Qualified teachers who know their subjects should be used to cover classes in school when there is a long-term staff absence, it has been claimed.
According to the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), it is important that teachers covering long-term absence, particularly in secondary schools, have the proper qualifications.
John Fairhurst, president of the ASCL, said: "There are some remarkable people out there that don't necessarily have the formal qualifications but can nonetheless do a good job.
"But it would be unusual for an unqualified person to be engaged in any long-term teaching. Short-term absences are a different issue."
He was speaking after the NASUWT, the teachers' union, suggested that using staff without Qualified Teacher Status to cover long-term absences is an "abuse" by schools and undermines widespread efforts to raise standards in the teaching profession.
However, Mr Fairhurst suggested that with shorter-term cover, he would rather use school supervisors than outsiders as this is a "better deal" for both the students and the schools themselves.
Posted by Theo Foulds