Records of the GTC (England and Wales) and the GTC (England and Wales) Trust

Scope and Content

Administrative records and publications relating to the initiative to establish a general training council in England and Wales.

Administrative / Biographical History

The GTC (England and Wales) was the culmination of a series of initiatives intended to push for the creation of an English General Teaching Council. There had been previous attempts by CATEC ( Campaign for a General Teaching Council) in 1980-1981; the Joint Council of Heads in 1982; and a UCET (Universities Council for the the Education of Teachers) led initiative from 1983-1990. This last was a grouping of educational and teaching organisations which led to the creation of a GTC working party chaired by John Sayer. The working party held meetings, wrote papers on the role and function of a GTC and put together an outline for a development action plan.

This work was taken forward by the creation of a registered company named GTC (England and Wales), incorporated in August 1988. Its first directors were Mary Russell and John Sayer, and the company lay dormant for a year until it could take over officially from the UCET initiative ( in February 1990). Its aims were to promote' the establishment of a statutory GTC for England and Wales' and '... to liase with the teaching profession and its representative associations, with statutory and non-statutory educational bodies, and with others representing key public interests.

The elected executive committee of GTC (England and Wales) comprised 8 Honorary Directors and 1 Honorary Secretary. The Directors were taken from various associations which had been meeting on an informal basis to further the idea of a general council, a grouping which was known as the Forum. John Sayer became the Honorary Secretary. For the next nine years, the Executive Committee met one month before and after each of the termly Forum meetings. Following an initial rotation of the Chair, John Tomlinson was approached to act as a permanent Chairman in 1990. In 1994, Malcom Lee became the Honorary Treasurer, John Sayer became Vice- Chair, and Roger Haslam took over as Secretary. Administration was undertaken on shoe-string budget provided by contributions from Forum associations, and the work was mostly voluntary. Tomlinson, Sayer, Haslam and Lee remained as the main administrators untill 2000. The GTC (England and Wales) was housed in a NATFHE building in Britannia Street, London.

Alongside the GTC (England and Wales), which acted as a political pressure group, the GTC (England and Wales) Trust was created as registered educational charity. This parallel organisation focused on the non-political aspect of the work and served as a vehicle for deliberations on professional matters. Its charitable status allowed it to accept money from funding bodies such us the Paul Hamlym Trust, the NATFHE Educational Trust and the Association of Education Committees Trust.

The GTC (England and Wales) and the associated Trust worked hard to promote legislation for a statutory GTC. It also produced written proposals and responses on teacher induction, initial teacher education and training, and continuing professional development. Links were formed with other teaching councils, especially Scotland, as well as organisations such as CATE (later the TTA), OFSTED, SCAA (now QCA), FEDA, and local authority associations such as WJEC, ACC and AMA.

A General Teaching Council for England was formally agreed in 1998 by the Teaching and Higher Education Act, which also made provision for the establishment of a General Teaching Council for Wales. The GTC for England was finally founded in September 2000 after several years of negotiotions. The GTC ( England and Wales) and GTC ( England and Wales) Trust were dissolved in 2001.


The original arrangement of the collection was very much based on the existing files. As there had been three or four individuals keeping their own filing systems, there was no central series organisation. It was therefore decided to arrange the individual files into series in order to make access easier for the researcher. The order and titling of the files has not been altered. In cases where files spanned more than one series, the file was placed in whichever seemed the most relevant.

The series are as follows:

1. Correspondence files

2. Records of meetings

3. Relations with external bodies

4. Publication leaflets

5. Parliamentary papers

6. Position papers/proposals and responses

7. Chairman's papers

Material held on digital storage media have been removed from the body of the collection and placed in the Digital Physical Media Storage Area (Jessica Womack, March 2014)

Access Information


Open, subject to signature of Reader Application Form.

Acquisition Information

Given by the GTC Trust in May, June and August 2000.

Other Finding Aids

Descriptive lists and database at fonds, series and file levels

Conditions Governing Use

A reader wishing to publish any quotation of information, including pictorial, derived from any archive material must apply in writing for prior permission from the Librarian or other appropriate person(s) as indicated by the Archivist. A limited number of photocopies may be supplied at the discretion of the Archivist.


For additional information about the establishment and development of the General Teaching Council for England, see: Sayer, John, 'The General Teaching Council', (London, 2000).