£30 million spent on supply teachers in North East since 2016

Teacher shortages are costing the four North East councils approximately £10 million per year, according to a freedom of information request obtained by North East Liberal Democrat MSP Mike Rumbles.

Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen City, Angus and Dundee have spent £30,071,296 on supply teaching staff since 2016. With Aberdeenshire Council accounting for the majority of the spending, totalling £19,015,208 during the three year period.


In the year to May, approximately £9.7 million had been spent on supply staff across all four local authority areas in 2018/19.


Mr Rumbles said: “Hundreds of teaching posts across the North East are going unfilled. Years of teacher shortages across Scotland has put a huge pressure on schools, especially in rural areas, and our local authorities have been forced to spend millions of pounds on supply staff just to get by.


“What make matters worse is that pupils’ choices, and therefore their ambitions, are being limited by the lack of permanent teachers.


“It comes as no surprise that Aberdeenshire, which has been deprived of crucial resources by the SNP government, is struggling more than most to fill key teacher places. Along with Aberdeen City the council has consistently received the lowest funding per head of population from the Scottish Government for over a decade.”




Notes for editors:


  • FOI submitted to local authorities by the Scottish Liberal Democrats (Please can you provide the total amount spent of supply teaching staff in schools in your local authority areas for each of the past three years):  


  • Aberdeen (16/07/19):

2016 – academic year 2016/17: £1,894,256

2017 – academic year 2017/18: £2,412,651

2018 – academic year 2018/19: £1,856,524 (until May 2019)



  • Aberdeenshire (15/07/19):




Teaching Supply Costs


£ 7,309,946.00

 £ 5,585,384.00

 £ 6,119,878.00


  • Dundee (09/07/19):

2018/19 - £1,274,481

2017/18 - £1,382,954

2016/17 - £1,450,182


  • Angus (19/06/19):

Financial Year

Primary Supply Costs (£)

Secondary Supply Costs (£)











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