Since 2022, subject-specific charities supportive of The MTPT Project community have been supporting mother-teachers in the minority subjects of RE and Physics through The MTPT Project’s Accreditation programme.

STEM Learning UK and the Ogden Trust have joined Culham St Gabriel’s Trust to sponsor two Accreditation places per year for Physics teachers and RE teachers, respectively.  The MTPT Project’s two-module Accreditation programme provides teachers on maternity, adoption or shared parental leave with six 1:1 coaching sessions with our qualified and experienced MTPT coaches to support them during their leave and as they return to work.

Our Accreditation differs from our other coaching programmes, as it empowers teachers to complete self-directed CPD around their new babies.  They then use this “maternityCPD” to create an Action Plan to use their learning to improve student outcomes in some way when they return to work.

Accreditation participants are motivated by maintaining a sense of their teacher identity, reconnecting with their love of their subject, and simply to gain the confidence and fulfilment that comes from using a different part of their brain whilst on parental leave.

So far, Culham St Gabriel’s Trust – the charity behind RE:Online – have supported four RE teachers and leaders through the Accreditation, inviting them to enjoy their online CPD courses, wider RE subject and leadership groups, and benefit from networking CPD opportunities with partners such as NATRE.

Four places are now available to Physics teachers – or Science teachers keen to develop their Physics subject knowledge – from STEM Learning UK and The Ogden Trust.  Like the sponsorship partnership with Culham St Gabriel’s Trust, Ogden and STEM Learning offer membership and further CPD resources to their Accreditation participants.

As well as an ethical commitment to addressing the motherhood penalty in education, specifically in their subjects, the support of Ogden, Culham St Gabriel’s and STEM Learning speaks directly to the strong need to retain experienced teachers.  This is especially true in subjects where recruitment targets are consistently missed, and lessons are being taught across the country by non-specialists.

Figures from the NFER show that only 44% of the government’s target for RE trainees was met in 2023-24, and a frightening 17% of Physics trainees.  27.5% of Physics lessons taught around the country are taught by non-specialists, and 26% of RE lessons are taught by non-specialists.  Even more reason to support those teachers that we do have in these subjects to overcome the barriers presented by the motherhood penalty!

Female RE and Physics colleagues currently on maternity, adoption or shared parental leave can take advantage of our sponsored Accreditation places by signing up here