Public Sector: Teaching body appoints C&W lifer for rebranding

The Teacher Training Agency (TTA) has made a brace of appointments as it prepares to adopt additional duties and rebrand as the Training and Development Agency for Schools next month.

Former Cable & Wireless director of brand Duncan Baker has joined as head of comms strategy, while the Centre for British Teaching group marketing manager Ruth Murton has become head of corporate comms.

Murton - who joined last week - arrives after 15 years in the education sector, including six years at the Centre for British Teaching. She replaces Don Neame, who left to work for Verve Communications in July.

Baker takes up his first public sector post on 12 September, bringing with him 20 years of experience at C&W, which he quit last February. The role at the TTA has been created to enable it to deal with the body's additional responsibilities.

While its main remit continues to be ensuring a high level of recruits for the teaching profession, it will also be responsible for training teachers after they have taken up their posts and working with staff such as lunchtime supervisors, classroom and teaching assistants, bursars and technicians.

The TTA must ensure 41,000 recruits enter teaching every year. It also needs to retain sufficient numbers of teachers in maths, science and languages, said press and PR manager Louise Woodward.

Attracting people from other careers is a major focus for the TTA, particularly as there are not enough science graduates to fill teaching posts in related subjects.

Tackling the abuse of teachers by their pupils is also rising up the political agenda, with low-level disruption and physical attacks blamed for dissuading some from the profession.

Band & Brown Communications continues to manage the TTA's 'Use Your Head, Teach' campaign (PRWeek, 4 June 2004). B&B replaced incumbent Financial Dynamics to take the two-year brief.

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