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The New ECT (Early Career Teacher) Induction Period Explained 2023

Chinalin Sharpe
17 Oct 2023
5 min read
The New ECT (Early Career Teacher) Induction Period Explained 2023

The educational landscape is ever-evolving, continuously moulding to meet the demands of the 21st century. One of the key changes in the recent years has been the transformation of the induction programme for early career teachers (ECTs). This guide aims to provide an in-depth understanding of these changes and their implications for ECTs in 2023.


The journey of a teacher is a marathon, not a sprint. It's a lifelong commitment to learning and growth. For early career teachers, the first few years are especially critical as they lay the foundation for their teaching career. Understanding the nuances of the induction programme can help these teachers navigate their early years effectively.

Understanding the ECT Induction Programme

The Department for Education has introduced a revised induction programme for early career teachers in England. This programme was officially implemented from September 2021 and is aimed at enhancing the professional development opportunities for teachers.

Key Changes in the Induction Programme

The revised induction programme introduces significant changes. One of the most notable alterations is the extension of the induction period from one year to two years, offering ECTs a more comprehensive training experience.

ECT Induction Programme: A Two-year Journey

The two-year induction path ensures that ECTs are better equipped to adapt to the demands of their burgeoning career. This extended period allows them to benefit from a well-structured training plan based on the Early Career Framework.

Some of the key features of the two-year programme include:

  • A comprehensive training programme: The training is based on the Early Career Framework, ensuring a robust and well-rounded development plan for the ECTs.
  • Dedicated mentor support: Each ECT is paired with a mentor who provides guidance and support throughout the induction period.
  • Time off timetable: ECTs receive designated time off their teaching schedule for induction activities, including training and mentor sessions.
  • Regular progress reviews: The ECTs undergo regular progress reviews and formal assessments against the teachers’ standards, ensuring continuous growth and development.

ECT Pay Progression

The extension of the induction period does not have any negative impact on the ECTs' pay or professional advancement opportunities. ECTs continue to progress on the pay scale both during and after the induction period, ensuring that their financial growth is not hindered.

You can find our full guide on ECT pay here.

Early Rollout of ECT Induction Programme

The two-year ECT induction programme was initially launched in autumn 2020 in selected regions of England including the north-east, Greater Manchester, Bradford, and Doncaster. The aim was to gather feedback and refine the programme before the national rollout in September 2021.

Past Inductions: What's Changed?

Prior to the changes, the induction period was one year, and the teachers serving this period were referred to as Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs).

With the implementation of the new induction programme, these teachers are now classified as ECTs.

Additional Support for NQTs Affected by COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought unprecedented challenges for teachers, particularly NQTs. In response to this, the Department for Education provided additional support for over 4,600 NQTs. They were given a one-year package of additional support based on the Early Career Framework.

Looking Ahead: Induction Programme from September 2023 From September 2023, all ECTs will need to complete a two-year induction period. This requirement also applies to ECTs who have not completed their induction by 1 September 2023. They will not need to start their induction again but must complete the remaining part of the two-year induction.


The changes in the ECT induction programme represent a significant step towards enriching the early career journey of teachers. By providing them with an extended induction period, dedicated mentor support, and a comprehensive training programme, the new induction scheme ensures that ECTs are well-prepared and confident as they embark on their teaching career.

Whether you are an early career teacher or a seasoned educator, understanding these changes is imperative to navigate the evolving educational landscape. As the saying goes, "The best way to predict the future is to create it." With the right knowledge and resources, you can shape a rewarding and fulfilling teaching career.

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