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Last updated on 8 January 2020
Ref: 36577
Statutory/mandatory for: Maintained schools Academies Free schools Independent schools Pupil referral units What does this mean?

Use our recommended questions to help you confidently approve your school's newly qualified teacher (NQT) induction policy.

Key facts

  • This is a statutory policy (but only required in academies by those that offer statutory induction to NQTs)
  • The Department for Education (DfE) introduced the requirement to have this policy in September 2019, when it updated its list of statutory policies for schools
  • It should be reviewed annually (this the DfE's recommended schedule - it's not a requirement)
  • It's up to the governing board to decide approval arrangements (for instance, whether the full board will approve or whether approval will be delegated to a committee)
  • The headteacher will write and be responsible for this policy

What this policy needs to do

Your school's NQT induction policy must comply with:

It's not your job to cross-reference your policy with these bits of guidance and legislation. But you should expect your headteacher to have done so.

3 key questions

Use our list of standard policy review questions as a starting point. Then ask the questions below:

1. To what extent does our NQT induction programme go over and above the statutory minimum requirements? Why/why not?

Your school may choose to adapt the induction programme provided to NQTs to include more than what's required in the statutory guidance. For example:

  • NQTs must have a reduced teaching timetable that represents no more than 90% of the timetable a teacher on the main pay range would have, but your school may decide to reduce NQT timetables more than this
  • Your school may provide a specific training programme for NQTs in addition to what any other member of staff would get

The headteacher should be able to explain why the programme the school offers meets both the needs of the school and the needs of the NQTs themselves.

2. Who serves as the NQT induction tutor?

Your school's policy may or may not name the person/people who carry out this role. If it doesn't, you should ask!

That's because NQT induction tutors act as mentors and provide a lot of professional development support for new teachers. That means they're key to:

  • Developing and embedding good teaching practice
  • Embedding the culture, vision and values of your school
  • Providing professional and personal support (and high-quality support is likely to influence how long an NQT stays at your school)

These things are important, so your headteacher should be confident in the person or people they've chosen.

3. How will you monitor the quality of the induction our NQTs are getting?

The induction tutor may or may not be the headteacher. If it isn't the headteacher, you should expect them to monitor induction arrangements for NQTs closely. 

Your headteacher should be able to explain how they'll monitor whether NQTs are developing well in their roles and getting the support they need from their induction tutors and the wider staff group. 

For example, the head might:

  • Meet regularly with the induction tutor(s) about NQT progress and development
  • Observe NQTs during lessons (they may do this jointly alongside the induction tutor)
  • Meet with NQTs directly

Examples of NQT induction policies

Have a look at the policies below to see how other schools approach NQT induction:

Primary academy

New Monument Primary Academy in Surrey specifies that induction tutors will carry out:

  • 6 performance reviews
  • 3 formal assessment meetings
  • 6 lesson observations

Download the policy here.

Community primary school

Low Ash Primary School in Bradford explains that the school induction programme includes inviting new teachers to the school before they take up the post.

The policy also explains that the deputy headteacher coordinates all induction activities.

Download the policy here.

Secondary academy

Horizon Community College in Barnsley has an NQT policy that explains:

  • The role of the induction lead
  • The specific knowledge and skills subject mentors will help NQTs develop
  • How NQTs will use the non-teaching time provided by their reduced timetable

Download the policy from this page.

Model policy

Our model policy meets all of the statutory requirements, and was approved by Forbes Solicitors. Use it to see what a good policy might look like, or to compare with your school's policy:


We wrote this article with the help of Jackie Beard. Jackie is a national leader of governance. She advises boards in all aspects of their role. She also sits on an independent appeal panel for exclusions and admissions for a local authority.

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