CANDIDATES

Routes in to teaching

What is ITT?

If you are thinking of becoming a teacher and don’t know where to start, firstly you will need to know what ITT stands for. You will see this mentioned a lot when you are doing your research in to different training routes. ITT is the abbreviation for Initial Teacher Training and is the umbrella of teacher training, in which different routes in to teaching sit. 

 

What do I need to hold to apply for an Initial Teacher Training Course? 

1. GCSEs: Firstly, applicants to teacher training need to have at least a grade C in English and Maths GCSE (or equivalent standard). If you are looking to get into primary teaching you will also need a grade C or equivalent in Science.

2. Degree: If you are thinking of becoming a secondary teacher your degree needs to be relevant to the subject you want to teach. Initial teacher training providers such as universities or schools make the final decision on whether your degree holds enough subject knowledge for you to teach that subject. Some providers may ask candidates to top up their subject knowledge with subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) courses. You will only be asked to do this if you are going to teach in a secondary school. The following secondary subject SKE courses are available: Chemistry, Computer Science, Design & Technology, Mathematics, Modern Foreign Languages, Physics. Most SKE courses are the equivalent of two weeks’ study, but some may be longer depending on whether a candidate needs a quick top-up or some in-depth knowledge.

3. Skills Tests: As of 1st July 2013 applicants to ITT courses must pass a numeracy and literacy skills test prior to the course starting.You will get 3 attempts at passing the tests. ITT providers will use the skills results to help them decide the suitability of an applicant. You should ensure that you take the tests before interview for the best possible chance of a successful application.

 

Initial Teacher Training Routes

You can do your teacher training either through a school, while employed at a school or through a higher education institution such as a university or college:

1. Through a School - SCITT (School-led initial teacher training)

School-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) is a programme run by and based in schools.

  • All SCITT courses lead to qualified teacher status (QTS) and many award the postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE
  • There are many schools and colleges running SCITT courses all over England. These groups provide all kinds of SCITT, covering primary, middle years and the full range of secondary subjects.
  • You will usually be based in one school from the consortium – the ‘lead school’ – while completing teaching practices at others within the group.
  • Courses last for one year full-time, running from September to June, some start in August.
  • You may be eligible to receive funding while you train
  • Entry requirements are a degree or an equivalent qualification. If your degree or other experience doesn’t relate to the subject you want to teach, then you might need to complete a pre-training course to get your knowledge up to the required level.

2. Employed at a school

There are currently 2 routes that you can take to “earn while you learn”

School Direct Training Programme (salaried)

  • With School Direct you are selected by a school from day one. Candidates will receive a salary on the unqualified teacher pay scale.
  • School Direct is available in primary and secondary schools across England
  • Programmes generally last for one year.
  • You must have three or more years’ experience of working life to apply.
  • Successful completion of a School Direct course will lead to qualified teacher status (QTS).
  • School Direct programmes may also include a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE).
  • If you are a high-quality graduate you may be eligible for a bursary of up to £20,000. Otherwise you will need to take an employment-based route.

Teach First

  • A two-year Leadership Development Programme
  • Teach First participants only work in schools in low income communities
  • You are guaranteed a full-time salary, paid by the school you are working in for a minimum of two years.
  • In the first year you are paid a basic salary as an unqualified teacher. In the second year you will be a newly qualified teacher (NQT) paid to scale.
  • There are no tuition fees.
  • Trainees join Teach First and their university partners for six weeks of intensive training before teaching in a school in a low-income community for two years, where they achieve a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE)
  • The programme is currently offered in the following regions: East Midlands, Greater London, Kent and Medway, North East, North West, South Coast, South West, Wales (South), West Midlands and Yorkshire and the Humber.

3. Higher Education Institution

  • The alternative route is for you to apply for a postgraduate certificate of education (PGCE) course at a university or higher education institution.
  • These ITT courses take about a year and include 18 weeks in a school for trainees wanting to teach at primary level, or 24 weeks for those wanting to teach at secondary level.
  • At the end of the course, assuming all the standards are met, you will be awarded qualified teacher status (QTS) and become a newly qualified teacher (NQT).
  • It may also be possible to study for a PGCE via flexible distance learning, or in a school by completing a programme of school-centred initial teacher training (SCITT), through Teach First or by completing the School Direct Training Programme

 

How do I get teaching experience?

You don’t need to put your career on hold whilst you wait to be accepted onto ITT. Whilst you are working towards your degree or after you have graduated you can gain teaching experience which will look great for your application.

Ofcourse, schools will always be willing to take on aspiring teachers to do voluntary work. Schools are very busy so the best way to achieve this is by putting on your suit and taking your CV down in person.

You can work in a school as a cover supervisor where you will oversee lessons and supervisor pupils in class. 

For you to work as a cover supervisor at Aspire People all you need is a few weeks experience of working with children and hold a degree or be working towards completing one. The benefits of working with Aspire People is that we offer free training courses to all our cover supervisors, we are able to offer you a mixture of work at different schools which help enhance your experience and we will also write you a reference on letter headed paper which you can take to your ITT interview. 

 

What do I do if i don't get on to an ITT course?

Don’t worry. You now have a year to gain vital experience for your next application. A lot of teachers have not been accepted with their first application onto an ITT but still go on to become teachers.

One of the main reasons students don’t get accepted onto ITT courses is because of a lack of experience. At Aspire People we can help you with gaining some teaching experience. You can work as a Cover Supervisor (unqualified teacher) in schools across the Midlands.

If you are interested in becoming a cover supervisor contact our supply teaching agency today

posted by Aspire People
Wed 26 June 2013

TESTIMONIALS


Aspire People have found me ongoing work and a longer term placement

I have been working for Aspire since November 2012 when I was recruited by Mark. At that time Mark indicated that he was confident he could find me work and this has proved to be the case.
He has found me ongoing weekly work and also a longer term placement. Mark has communicated with me on a regular basis and has provided feedback from assignments. Based on my experience, I have recommended Aspire to colleagues.


Jo, Primary Teacher, Birmingham

“Aspire People don’t harass me like other agencies”

Aspire People take a personal approach, the staff have managed to achieve that fine balance of being readily available to be contacted but not being constantly harassing every morning.


Mr. Kay, Cover Co-Ordinator, Finham Park School

“Aspire People’s Work Experience programme taught our pupils about the working world”

Aspire People organised a Work Experience programme for Plantsbrook School. This was a major commitment by Aspire People and the students found the experience very beneficial. It gave them the opportunity to understand commitments of a working environment and develop skills in communication and organisation. We look forward to working with them again.


Mrs. S Westwood, Business Manager, Plantsbrook School

We often get information on safeguarding before we hear it in school

Aspire People is professional, informative and extremely helpful.  Communication has always been excellent, both by email and telephone. We are often given information on safeguarding practices before we have even heard them in school.


Mrs. Beechey, Cover Co-Ordinator, The Crestwood School

“I am an ambassador for Aspire People”

My consultant has found me work every day which has led to some wonderful long term assignments.  When I am sent to an assignment I feel as if I am visiting the school as an ambassador for Aspire People and I am proud to work for what I feel is by far the best teaching agency in the West Midlands.


Lucy

If it wasn’t for Aspire I don’t think I’d be completing my NQT induction

I am now completing my NQT year with a school I was introduced to through Aspire.  Mark offered me to do a placement at the school, and this led to the school offering me a position.  Had it not have been for Aspire, I don’t think I’d be completing my NQT year this year.  I’d definitely recommend Aspire to other NQTs looking for permanent work.


Yasmin, Primary NQT, Birmingham

My consultant reflected the professional and personal qualities that Aspire People prides itself on

Right from when I registered, my consultant Emily reflected the professional and personal qualities that Aspire prides itself on. Emily understood my adaptability as a teacher but also my needs in terms of the type of school that would suit me. Clearly taking time to study the detail of my CV and skills and experience, this ensured bookings were appropriate for both myself and the school(s). I found Aspire People helpful, polite and dedicated. I recommended Aspire to a colleague largely on the basis of how Emily had presented herself and the agency.


Mark, Secondary Teacher, Staffordshire

I was very wary and nervous at the start, but my first day of work was great!

I worked with Aspire a few months, after graduating as a teacher.  I found it difficult securing a full time position and supply was recommended to me.  Like everyone who goes in for supply I was very wary and nervous at the start, but my first day of work was great!


Shahida, Primary NQT, Birmingham

Within one minute of sending my CV, Aspire contacted me for an interview

Aspire have been very influential in my career. After qualifying as a teacher, I was unsuccessful in securing a full-time teaching job. Within one minute of sending my CV, Aspire contacted me for an interview. They have been able to place me in a school on a long-term basis, which has been welcomed with gratitude. I am grateful and thankful to all of the team working for Aspire people, they are a great agency to work for. All members of staff have shown true professionalism and worked hard to ensure that myself and other colleagues who I have met through the agency are always working.


Steve, Secondary Teacher, Warwickshire

“A consistently friendly service from Aspire People and our Consultant”

Aspire People offer a very efficient and friendly service.  All their consultants are highly professional and the company is able to consistently deliver high quality supply staff


Mrs Hanks, Newhall Primary School

“A faster, more friendly agency”

I registered with Aspire People on 27th September and within 7 working days my vetting checks had been completed and I was placed in to a school.
The application process was informative yet friendly and relaxed. Other agencies I registered with were not as friendly and made me feel nervous and unwelcome. I get on really well with my consultant, Kelly. Overall Aspire People is friendly, helpful and professional.


Valarie

“I really enjoyed the training, a very interesting and engaging module”

The Behaviour Managment Course was a very interesting and engaging module. I liked the honesty given from the trainer and it was great to be given example planning sheets. Thank you Aspire People”


Marvin, Primary NQT, Birmingham

“I’m always paid on time and any queries are dealt with efficiently”

The Payroll department at Aspire People is really efficient. I’m always paid on time, any queries I do have are dealt with efficiently and quickly. The staff are friendly
and respond to emails or texts without delay.  From my point of view Aspire People is an excellent agency to work for.


Helen, Secondary Teacher

“Aspire People’s candidates are of a higher standard than other agencies”

“The cover supervisors supplied to us have been of excellent standard and provide a suitable and cost effective alternative for day to day cover. The Qualified teachers we have had from Aspire People are always professional and of a very high standard in comparison to those tried from other agencies.”


Lorraine, Cover Co-Ordinator, St Thomas More RC School

“I have had nothing but first rate service from Aspire People”

“Since I first started working with Aspire People and my consultant Adam, I have had nothing but first rate service.  I have found them to be assiduous in finding work placements, and supportive once on placement in all ways. I have been so impressed I recommended a friend. Adam is a great guy and I really cannot praise him too highly.”


Mr. Fisher, Nottingham English Supply Teacher

“If you’re looking for an honest, efficient & quality provider of staff look no further than Aspire”

“Holyhead had previously not used agencies. As a last resort I approached Aspire People about a DT technician. It was the best decision I could have made. We have been so impressed by their quality and efficiency we now contact Aspire People first regarding vacancies.  If the candidate is suitable we keep them on a 10 week temporary basis then employ them ourselves with no extra cost! If you are looking for an honest, efficient and quality provider of staff then look no further than Aspire People.”


Marie Shiels, Business Manager, Holyhead Business & Enterprise Academy