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Troops to Teachers Programme

Volume 593: debated on Monday 2 March 2015

8. What assessment she has made of the potential benefits to pupils of the expansion of the Troops to Teachers programme. (907791)

Service leavers have a wealth of skills and experiences that are transferable to classrooms, including teamwork, leadership—[Interruption.]

Order. There is very discordant noise in the Chamber. A very respected Minister, Mr Timpson, is endeavouring to answer a question and I think pupils in the average classroom around the country would behave rather better. I remind the hon. Member for Huddersfield (Mr Sheerman), in all gentleness and charity, that he is something of an elder statesman in this House and we look to him to set an example to other colleagues.

Thank you, Mr Speaker. Anyone would imagine that there is an election on the horizon.

There are 84 trainees on the Troops to Teachers scheme and the expansion of the programme allows even more talented service leavers to make an important contribution to our children’s education.

My Gosport constituency has very strong links to the armed forces, particularly in Navy engineering. Does my hon. Friend agree that schemes such as Troops for Training can only help to spread expertise to students in my area?

I absolutely agree. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State recently visited Bristol to see for herself the latest cohort being trained, and she was hugely impressed by both their calibre and their commitment. Along with my hon. Friend the Member for Gosport (Caroline Dinenage), I strongly encourage schools in Gosport and elsewhere to contact the university of Brighton to secure a trainee for this September and benefit from the next tranche of Troops to Teachers.