25 August 2022 02:02

Royal Academy of Dance advises public to check dance teacher’s qualifications after publishing revealing new research

A new survey conducted on behalf of the RAD by YouGov revealed that 89% of adults in the UK were not aware that there is currently no legal requirement for dance teachers to have a relevant dance teaching qualification to lead a dance class or a school.

Photo Siobhan Hennessy

Although this new research shows that a large majority of adults were not aware that there is currently no obligation for someone to have relevant qualifications in order to teach dance to the public, it did prove that this was something that was important to people when selecting a class. For example:

  • 54% of adults surveyed selected ‘qualfications of a dance teacher’ as an important factor when selecting a dance class for themselves or for their child
  • Parents and guardians surveyed felt even stronger about this with 56% choosing dance teaching qualifications as an important consideration and 77% stating they would want to be able to check credentials of a dance teacher, before enrolling their child or attending themselves.
  • To the same end, 79% of parents and guardians surveyed stated they agreed it would be useful to have access to a service which allowed them to check a dance teacher’s credentials.

Photo Siobhan Hennessy

Whilst the safety of children and young people is vital, it is worth noting that whatever a student’s age, it is important that they still have access to a qualified teacher who understands how our physiology changes as we get older, and how to teach movement safely for all ages and body types - as well as keep older learners motivated.

A global register of RAD teachers

Following this new research, the RAD has today launched a new global Register of Teachers, where employers, prospective students, and their parents and guardians can find RAD Registered Teachers with confidence. Only teachers who hold registered teacher status are included in this register. Holding this status means the following:

  • The dance teacher has met the eligibility criteria for registration. This means they have dance teaching qualifications, including university-validated courses, as well as other RAD awards or routes. These courses cover best practice pedagogy principles, as well as in-depth subject knowledge, and how to deliver dance classes which are developmentally and physically safe and appropriate.
  • The dance teacher has agreed to comply with RAD’s Code of Professional Practice for teachers; this covers expected values and behaviours, and professional conduct, which is intended to encourage a welcoming and inspiring learning experience.
  • The dance teacher is expected to engage in regular professional development, covering a range of topics.
  • The dance teacher is expected to follow RAD’s Safeguarding Good Practice Guidelines to keep children and vulnerable adults safe.
  • The dance teacher is eligible to put students forward for RAD exams, should they wish to do so.

Whether you choose an RAD teacher or not, we want to make sure you make an informed decision; download our handy checklist to help you.

RAD Chief Executive Tim Arthur commented on these new findings:  “At the RAD we believe that everyone can dance - but not everyone can teach dance. Unqualified teachers devalue the whole art form because a bad experience can put people off dance for life, not to mention potentially causing injuries. Conversely, a great experience with an experienced and knowledgeable teacher, can be life changing. Unfortunately, I am not surprised to see that 89% of those surveyed didn’t know that a dance teaching qualification isn’t a legal requirement in order to teach dance. But I hope that the RAD’s new Register of Teachers will allow the public to make informed decisions when finding a dance teacher. In fact, we have also created a checklist which can be used by the public, which covers a list of questions they may wish to ask when finding any qualified dance teacher, because ultimately we want to inspire the world to dance!”

Visit RAD's Register of Teachers.

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