Posted on Monday 12th Mar 2018
The education secretary has promised to cut teachers' workload in an attempt to resolve a recruitment crisis in England's schools.
Damian Hinds told a head teachers' conference in Birmingham that there will be no more new changes to primary tests, GCSEs or A-levels.
But he faced challenges from delegates over school funding shortages.
And Mr Hinds told head teachers: "It has been tough, funding is tight, I don't deny that at all."
Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, welcomed the education secretary's promise to cut the "bureaucratic burden" on teachers.
But there were calls from the conference floor for Mr Hinds to "answer the question" over problems with school funding.
The education secretary had conceded: "I understand why that's people's number one issue. I understand why, for everyone in this room, the funding of our schools and colleges is such an important topic."
Damian Hinds told head teachers he will work with them on cutting bureaucracy
In his first speech to heads and teachers since becoming education secretary, Mr Hinds said that tackling the teacher shortage was a "top priority".
Mr Hinds said long hours and red tape were among the "biggest threats" to recruiting and retaining staff.
For five successive years, recruitment targets for teaching have been missed and schools have complained of the expense and disruption of relying on temporary staff or having to use teachers who are not specialists in the subjects they are teaching.
Schools are spending £835m per year on supply agencies, according to the most recent government figures.
01/10/21What changes are being made to GCSEs and A-levels next year?
Department for Education says 2022 will be a ‘transition year’
14/09/21Covid: Single jab recommended for 12 to 15-year-olds by UK's top doctors
Healthy children aged 12 to 15 should be offered one dose of a Covid vaccine, the UK's chief medical officers say.
29/06/21Covid: School isolation rules could end in autumn
The Covid control system in England's schools, where groups of pupils have to self-isolate if one tests positive, could be scrapped in the autumn.
26/05/21DfE had no plan for dealing with a pandemic, says critical report by MPs
Public accounts committee also said a failure to set standards for remote learning led to ‘unequal experiences’
25/05/21Exams 2021: How will my grades be assessed this year?
Exams have been cancelled for the second year running due to the impact caused by coronavirus. The government have put schools will be in charge of grades and assessments this summer in a bid to avoid the results day chaos caused by last year's controversial algorithm.