Teacher workforce statistics and teacher vacancies, sickness absence and substitution statistics published

Date published: 14 June 2018

The Department of Education has published two statistical bulletins today.

News Update

They are the ‘Teacher workforce statistics in grant-aided schools in Northern Ireland, 2017/18’ and ‘Teacher vacancies, sickness absence and substitution statistics in grant-aided schools in Northern Ireland, 2017/18’.

These statistical bulletins provide analysis of the latest annual data collections in relation to teacher numbers, pupil: teacher ratios, teacher vacancies, teacher sickness absence and teacher substitution costs in grant-aided schools in 2017/18.

Key Points

The number of full-time equivalent teachers is 18,489.6. This represents a slight increase of 0.2 from 18,489.4 in 2016/17.

The median age of teachers is 41.5 years, an increase from 41.0 years in 2013/14. There are proportionally fewer teachers aged under 30 this year (11.1%) than in 2013/14 (11.9%).

The teacher headcount is 19,867 this is an increase of 89 teachers from 2016/17. The proportion of teachers working part-time continues to rise.

The proportion of teachers working in all schools who are male has been declining over the last five years. Most notable is the absence of male teachers in nursery schools.

The overall Pupil: Teacher Ratio (PTR) in 2017/18 is 18.0, an increase of 0.2 from 2016/17.

There were fewer vacancies in November 2017, than in the previous year, with 1,154 teacher vacancies at the end of the academic year 2016/17, 855 (74.1%) of which had been filled by November 2017.

The average number of days lost per teacher due to sickness in all schools was 9.3. This represents a decrease of 0.2 days from the previous year.

Teacher substitution costs decreased from £73.6 million to £69.0 million.

The number of substitution days worked by Prematurely Retired Teachers has fallen to 6,305 days in 2017/18. This represents 1.3% of the total days worked, compared to 14.4% in 2008/09.

Notes to editors: 

National Statistics

1. National Statistics status means that official statistics meet the highest standards of trustworthiness, quality and public value.

2. All official statistics should comply with all aspects of the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. They are awarded National Statistics status following an assessment by the Authority’s regulatory arm. The Authority considers whether the statistics meet the highest standards of Code compliance, including the value they add to public decisions and debate.

3. It is a producer’s responsibility to maintain compliance with the standards expected of National Statistics. If we become concerned about whether these statistics are still meeting the appropriate standards, we will discuss any concerns with the Authority promptly. National Statistics status can be removed at any point when the highest standards are not maintained, and reinstated when standards are restored.

4. For general enquiries about National Statistics, contact the National Statistics Public Enquiry Service on 0845 601 3034

minicom: 01633 812399

E-mail: info@ons.gsi.gov.uk

Fax: 01633 652747

Letters: Customer Contact Centre, Office for National Statistics, Rm D265, Government Buildings, Cardiff Road, Newport, South Wales, NP10 8XG

5. You can also find further information at National Statistics

Further Information

Requests for further information should be addressed to:-

Leonie Robinson

Analytical Services Unit

Department of Education

Rathgael House

Balloo Road



BT19 7PR

Telephone     (028)  9127 9992

E-mail: leonie.robinson@education-ni.gov.uk

6. DE Statistical Bulletins can be accessed on the Department's website at education workforce

7. Please send any feedback on the content or presentation of this publication to the

Email: leonie.robinson@education-ni.gov.uk

8. Media enquires to the Department of Education’s Communication team on Tel: 02891279675. Out of office hours contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699715440 and your call will be returned.


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