Routes into Teaching

Routes into Teaching

Those who shape the minds of our future leaders shape our future.

Anyone can have a child, it takes a special person to guide a child.

It takes high-level skills, patience and maximum effort to support large numbers of pupils into becoming well-rounded individuals.

Whether in a primary school, secondary school, college or university, teaching is one of the world’s most demanding jobs. The rewards far outweigh the costs. 

Nobody should go into an educational environment expecting an easy ride. Even support staff are at the mercy of the high-paced whirlwind lifestyle. This is not a negative reflection on schools themselves, but an accurate snapshot of the exceptional expectations that are had for both staff and students. 

Modern schools have an updated view on learning environments; children must be nurtured to develop their abilities to the top of their potential. Behavioural issues no longer result in students being removed from the learning environment which benefits both the child, the class, teacher and wider community in the long-term. 

Without using their position of authority (as a trusted role model setting an example to thousands of children over the years, if they choose to remain in the profession) to break through barriers of all shapes and sizes. They face a variety of children: special education needs, international arrivals and low-income families. This muddle of backgrounds is squeezed into one classroom and taught to get along in spite of adversities. 

It is not the academic background which is important. As long as there is a passion for the subject as well as a strong knowledge, paired with a willingness to adapt to feedback and a love for working with children from a vast range of backgrounds. Although, there is the opportunity to train within certain areas such as SEN children, international new arrivals, nurture groups and more. 

There is the option to specialise in specific sectors within the education industry: safeguarding, management, SENCO, etc.

To be able to decide the right specialism or area for your needs as a teacher means trial and error. Work experience is the best way to discover whether early years, primary or secondary schools are your niche. You might surprise yourself. A common misconception is that secondary students are more hard work, however all ages of children have their sown unique strengths and challenges. It is possible to gain work in colleges but there are higher numbers of vacancies in secondary schools which offer a-levels. 

If a PhD is on the cards for you, there’s the chance to progress on from teacher, to lecturer. Some universities offer training programmes for the PhD students to take classes of their own, usually at undergraduate level, to experience the academic experiencing of mentoring. This route involves writing and researching a lot more alongside hosting seminars and workshops. 

Needless to say, there’s always opportunities to teach abroad. 


All the options

Ways to Qualified Teacher Status

  • Teach First Charity
    Apply through Teach First if you have an undergraduate degree with a result of 2:1 or higher. Aim to help schools in disadvantaged areas receive quality teachers. Paid in placement at 19k and once achieved qualified teacher’s status receives a rise to £24-26k
  • Get into Teaching GOV UK

  • Universities – PGDE or PGCE
    Requires student applications through UCAS and paying course tuition/living costs by student finance loans. 

  • School-led training
    Often you can gain experience in schools as ‘cover supervisors’ who take classes when teachers are off or as a teaching assistant supporting the class teacher. Some schools offer in school training to gain qualified teachers status. Look at a local directory of schools near you to find out if they offer this too. 

  • Placement abroad
    Many countries fund training teachers internationally to relocate to teach. 

Who can  support you?

  • Teachers
  • Support staff
  • Line manager 
  • Mentor
  • HR Advisor

That’s a basic overview of the main routes into teaching. For more detailed specifications on these differing pathways, follow us as we go through each option. Choose the right way for you. The world needs more teachers. 

“The best thing for being sad," replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, "is to learn something. That's the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then — to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.”
T.H. White
Writer of The Once and Future King

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