Why is regulation important and why is a fee necessary?
It is an established principle in the UK and many other countries worldwide that professions in which the public have a legitimate interest, should be regulated in order to protect / safeguard the public. In practice, this means that:
- the public can be reassured that the people working in a particular profession are suitably qualified, their knowledge and skills are kept up to date and their conduct and competence is of an appropriate standard (they are fit to practise their profession);
- those working within a particular profession can demonstrate that they:
- individually and collectively, have a commitment to maintaining and raising standards, in the interests of the public;
- are part of a profession of high status and standing, with specific entry requirements and expectations of conduct and competence rather than just being in a job which anybody can work in.
In achieving these objectives, most regulatory bodies have the broadly the same statutory responsibilities, which are to:
- maintain a Register of people able to practise;
- develop standards which those working within a profession must comply with, including a Code of Practice and Conduct;
- develop standards for education and training, which those people working within a profession must comply with;
- deal with concerns raised about a person’s “fitness” to practise their particular profession.
There are two models of regulation worldwide. One is that government regulates a particular profession and therefore the people within that profession do not pay a fee. The second is that a profession regulates itself. The second model is much more common worldwide and is regarded as the preferable one for the profession concerned, as the profession itself is entrusted with the responsibilities set out above, without government intervention. An effect of self-regulation is that those professionals have to pay a fee towards self-regulation. However, in the main, professionals are prepared to do this in return for:
- having control over their own regulation;
- demonstrating that “what they do” is more than just an occupation, which anybody can do, but is a “profession”, with specific standards for entry to that profession and for continued practice within that profession. Such an approach has potential knock-on benefits in terms of public perception / status and for negotiating pay, terms and conditions with government.
To summarise, the fee is:
- a registrant’s licence to practise;
- a contribution towards one’s profession status and standing, delivered through professional regulation.
The fee model for the EWC is actually a hybrid one, in that while all registrants pay a fee, the Welsh Government will also pay a subsidy directly to the EWC to reduce the fee for all registrants.
Having set out in general terms why professions are regulated and why those within such professions should pay a registration fee, it is worth commenting briefly on why the extension of regulation to the wider education workforce in particular is beneficial. In summary, the main reasons are:
- Before April 2015, only school teachers needed to register. However, education provision has changed dramatically, meaning that others in the education workforce are increasingly central to the delivery of teaching and learning, in particular further education teachers and support staff, work-based learning staff, support staff in schools and youth workers. As a result, the regulation is being extended to the wider education workforce;
- the impact and implications of poor standards and inadequate safeguarding are extremely high in the field of education and arguably higher than in many other professions. This is because:
- it is children and young people who (in the main) will be affected;
- high quality teaching and learning contributes to better outcomes for pupils which in turn ensures society can produce future doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers and other professionals
- the opportunity for the new groups (FE staff, schools support staff, work- based learning staff and youth workers) to be recognised as professionals and be afforded higher status and standing is significant.
What is registration?
Being registered not only allows an individual to practise but it also provides assurances to employers, parents/carers and learners that registrants are appropriately qualified and continue to meet the expected standards of conduct and competence.
Teachers and other practitioners in England don't need to register: why do we?
The Government in England abolished the General Teaching Council for England (GTCE) and the Institute for Learning (IfL) and therefore school and FE teachers in England do not have to register. However, in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, and across the world, the regulatory bodies were not abolished and registration is a requirement.
What information is held on the Register of Education Practitioners?
Personal details held on the Register include a practitioner’s name, contact address, employment, qualifications and professional development.
We produce an annual Statistics Digest which summarises key information from the Register. We also produce analyses of data from the Register and use this information to feed into workforce planning and to inform policy development. You can see more statistical reports here.
Who has access to the Register?
Registrants have access to their own record. Specific limited information is also available to employers and the general public.
How can I access my record on the Register?
How much will I have to pay?
All registered practitioners will pay a registration fee. The Welsh Government has set the following fees.
|£45||School Teacher||you must hold QTS|
|Work Based Learning Practitioner|
|Youth Worker||mandatory qualifications|
|£15||School Learning Support Worker|
|FE Learning Support Worker|
|Youth Support Worker||mandatory qualifications|
Is there a reduced fee for part-time workers?
No. The administration costs involved with collecting a range of different fee amounts would be high and would mean that the registration fee for all registrants would have to increase. Administering a single annual fee for each group of registrants is more cost effective.
I took up a post half way through the year; do I still have to register?
Yes, you will need to register. You can find information on how to register here.
Is there a minimum qualification requirement to register?
For FE teachers, school and FE support staff and work based learning practitioners there are no qualification requirements to register at the moment.
There are minimum qualification requirements for Youth Workers and Youth support workers.
All new registrants must also satisfy the EWC’s Suitability criteria. You can read more about Suitability here.
You can only be registered in the school teacher category if you have qualified teacher status (QTS). But:
If you are studying to teach via a paid route, eg Teach First or the Graduate Teacher Programme (GTP) you will need to register in the school learning support worker category.
Student teachers studying through the higher education route do not need to register.
If you are studying for a PGCE in post compulsory education (PGCE FE) or PCET, you will not be required to register unless you are also undertaking some paid teaching hours. If you are being paid for any teaching, you will need to register in the FE learning support worker category.
Each year, members of our Registration team organise visits to talk with all final year students in Wales, including Teach First.
If I work in more than one registrant group do I need to register more than once?
If you work in more than one role, for example as a school teacher and a FE teacher, you need to register in both categories. However, you will only be required to pay one registration fee.
I have a teaching qualification from overseas; how do I get my qualification recognised in Wales?
The EWC follows the European Directive in recognising overseas qualifications.