Deciding to apply for Teacher Training is a big step, finding the right provider for you is really important. We would like you to meet some of our Teacher Training trainees from the academic year 2018/19 - Meet Annie, Laura and Colin who have put together a few paragraphs about how they you got on to the teacher t
What made you decided to go into teaching after completing your degree?
After completing my English Degree in 2017, I was struggling with deciding what career path to take. I wanted to find something where I could share my passion for the English language. The thought of a 9-5 and being cooped up in an office, did not appeal to me. I wanted to find something social, where my talents would be tested and stretched.
After visiting a primary school, I decided that teaching would be something I was interested in. On the off chance that I would be interested in Secondary – I visited Thomas Estley. It was at that moment that I decided that teaching was for me. I applied for the role of Literacy Assistant – just to be sure.
The year only further confirmed my desire to teach. It made me realise that teaching was the opportunity where I could not only share my passion for English but could work alongside a variety of different students and make real change in their lives.
I initially looked at a variety of different routes into teacher training but after talking to different teachers, I decided to apply for teacher training through TELA School Direct. I knew it was going to be a difficult year but knowing that I would be part of the TELA family put me at ease.
The support we received throughout the year from TELA was incredible. If ever there was an issue, Jo or Ian were happy to help. Our weekly meetings gave us reassurance that we weren’t the only ones feeling the pressure of the teaching world, and it was comforting to know I wasn’t the only one.
TELA provided loads of opportunity that Core University-led teacher training routes didn’t: different Alliance days gave us the opportunity to visit a variety of schools and see the different ways of running, networking events were held and we were given the opportunity to talk to different members of staff from different schools.
I was lucky enough to be offered an NQT position at Thomas Estley, and many of the 2018/19 TELA cohort remain at TELA schools. It is comforting to know that during my NQT year, there are people all around me that I can ask for support from; not only from the school itself, Jo and Ian, but also among fellow TELA trainees.
Which training route are you taking and why did you choose this route?
I completed my teacher training through the Schools Direct route with Achieve with TELA. I chose this route because I think it is the “best of both worlds”. You get information, training and guidance from both the university and front-line professionals currently working in schools. It’s a very supportive route and it is exciting to be in schools right from the beginning on training days with your teacher training Schools Direct provider. It is also incredibly helpful that the Schools Direct route puts you in direct contact with schools within the alliance meaning that you can get a very good idea as to where you would like to work in the future, and allowing you to put those seeds out there that you would like to work at these schools. Also you know where your placements are going to be right from the beginning as they will always be within that particular teaching alliance.
Why did you decided to change careers ?
For about ten years, I had told friends and family that I wanted to enter the teaching profession. I have worked with young people in my spare time ever since I was young (last century!) and have my own family. With our children I saw how good teachers opened up opportunities for them to develop interests and skills that have positively influenced their lives. Hence my motivation to become a teacher but I still needed to provide for my family.
I have had a long career working for Housing Associations which I enjoyed. The experiences and skills I gained were transferable but without any formal qualifications, I couldn’t see how I might actually become a teacher. Then in 2011, alongside full-time work. I studied for an A-level and sat in an exam hall for the first time since 1981! In 2012, I enrolled with the Open University and successfully completed my degree in 2018. Whilst still finishing this, I approached TELA and the University of Leicester to see what options were available for teacher training. Critically, for my chosen secondary subject specialism, a bursary had been made available; I was interviewed and my application was accepted.
Everyone was very helpful and gave me lots of practical advice and good information. I opted for a local teacher training approach which still provided all the benefits from the University. It really was a win-win situation. Our TELA cohort accessed brilliant resources and training that was being delivered by current practitioners within local schools. It was a great opportunity to visit several schools, to see educational principles being applied in classroom settings and to observe some excellent teachers in action.
Throughout the teacher training course, we were well supported by dedicated TELA staff and we received timely advice throughout the whole experience. I was delighted when my search for a teaching job was completed by February, several months before I was due to qualify. This gave me confidence to work through the placement and focus on the other remaining requirements of the University, without being distracted or concerned about finding employment.
Without hesitation, I consider the Schools Direct teacher training route was the best option for my circumstances and hence I would strongly suggest others consider it for themselves.