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


“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

“The documentation on supply staff is the best I have received”

I was impressed with the quality of presentation that my consultant made to me in July, it was following this that I chose to book staff from Aspire People in September.  The documentation provided to me about supply staff is the best I have received, providing all the information required clearly.  The quality of staff sent to me has been very high and the one very slight problem I had (late arrival of a supply teacher) was dealt with by him straight away. One of the many qualities that I like about Aspire People is their honesty.


Mrs. Beverley, The Grove School

“I was encouraged to do my PGCE”

Having started as a cover supervisor, Aspire People actively encouraged me to qualify as a teacher and advised me which course to choose.  After gaining my PGCE, I had no hesitation in working with them again as I knew there would be regular work and I would be treated professionally. Over the last three years I have been made to feel part of the team and have always felt supported through any difficult times I have had whilst working in education.


Vincent

“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

“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

“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

“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

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,  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

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

“our boys get to experience first hand what it is like to communicate with an employer”

‘Aspire People took part in an interview day that we held for pupils. Not only did they allow the boys to practice their interview technique but they coached and mentored them, providing constructive feedback. This additional service has a positive impact on the education we provide our pupils. They get to experience first hand what it is like to communicate with an employer.’


Sarah McAneny

“Find an agency that listens to what your school needs, like Aspire People”

Find a recruitment agency that will take the time to meet with you and actually listen to what your school needs.  Show them around and let them get a feel for the kinds of pupils within the school. This way your consultant will have a great chance of matching the right candidates to your school. You can build trust up with the agency and in the end save so much time and money.  Some years ago, Shenley Academy’s predecessor school had a poor reputation among supply staff. When ever Aspire People send a candidate to us, they love their day, if there is ever any negative feedback I always act upon it.  Now they all say they would be happy to come back to Shenley Academy and nothing makes me prouder.


Mrs. Bain, Information Services Manager, Shenley Academy

“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

“Aspire People offer a range of solutions fit for the day ahead at St. Edmunds RC School”

“Aspire People’s supply teachers are reliable and always say they enjoy coming to work at our school.  They have a range of solutions from HLTAs through to qualified teachers so I can pick what is most appropriate and cost effective option for the day I have ahead.”


Mrs. DiFranco, Finance & Cover Officer, St. Edmunds RC School

Holyhead have used Aspire People’s services since 2011, I have no hesitation in recommending them”

Holyhead had previously not used agencies, as a last resort I approached Aspire People when looking for a DT Technician.  Kelly ensured the candidate met all of our needs (of which there were many) and had undergone the safeguarding checks. We have been so impressed by the quality and efficiency of service provided by Aspire People that we now contact them in the first instance regarding any vacancy.  If the candidate proves to be suitable then we employ them ourselves. If you are looking for an honest, efficient, quality provider of education staff, look no further than Aspire People.


Marie Shiels, Business Manager, Holyhead Secondary School

Emily, always happy on the phone, helping with any queries, nothing ever feels like too much trouble

During my time working for Aspire I have found them to be a very friendly and reliable. My consultant Emily does her best to make sure that I have a steady flow of work. Her attention to detail is excellent and the information she provides enables me know exactly where i’m going and what I am going to do. Emily communicates in a very professional manner whilst also allowing for a more relaxed, personal touch. Always happy on the phone, helping with any queries, nothing ever feels like its too much trouble for her. I have no issues, she is a pleasure to work with.


Adam, Cover Supervisor, Cannock