This year the number of people accepted to train as physics teachers was only 560 in the United Kingdom which was far below the ambitious target set by the government of 990. Michael Gove expressed his concerns at the news and stated that more should be done to attract graduates into the teaching profession. This news comes days after the announcement of an extra £5,000 bonus which could be potentially added to the £20,000 golden hello to competent physics graduates to entice them into teaching.
Personally I have also considered physics teaching as a fulfilling career path however the salary that one earns does not seem enough when you compare it to the whole host of other career paths on offer to a newly graduated physicist. Graduates who do not go into academic research can expect a generous salary in IT, financial and engineering firms. I think this increase in training bursaries is a step in the right direction but also think that a more positive response would be met by starting STEM newly qualified teachers higher up the teaching pay scale corresponding to their subjects demand.
My A level physics teacher was the reason that I decided to do a physics degree and we always need more enthusiastic people like him to bring the subject alive for the next generation!