Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I'm currently in my final year of BA Ed. Studies and considering taking a PGCE after. My concern is the amount of work and time I will have to commit in order to complete it. I have 3 primary aged children at home and would like to know realistically if it will be possible for me to do it. Can it just be done 8 - 3.30 in school then continue with the rest of work (marking, lesson planning etc.) at home or are you expected to stay in school until 6pm?
    Has anyone else done a PGCE with small children at home?
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Hello,
    Just spotted your post. I have two children (now 8 and 9) and I'm halfway through my PGCE.
    You can do it with young children at home and there are a few of us (mums with children) on my course. Some things you need to think about...

    1 You will need to find out about the structure of the PGCE course for lecture times etc. On school placements (and in general) you are not expected to arrive and leave with the bell.

    2 Location - unless you are right next to your children's school you will need childcare before and after school. But there are teachers who leave as soon as the pupils do and work in the evening - it is tiring - I tend to do that.
    I use some before/after clubs at school or child care and walking in with friends.

    As you are a student currently no doubt you are dealing with some of these issues.

    You will have school hols off at the same time once qualified (but there may still be the odd training day that's out of synch).

    If there's somewhere you have in mind for PGCE you could get in touch with the course leader for a chat.

    Best excuse for not doing housework ever!

    Hopefully worth it in the end - I can see that parents make good teachers generally and find some aspects of teaching more accessible than younger child-free trainees - as you have had lots of practise at speaking with children.

    Good luck!
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Yes it can be done. I am doing it. But it is bloomin hard work. I have been very lucky in that the two schools I have been placed with haven't minded me leaving shortly after the bell has gone. I leave for work at 7am leaving my wife to deliver kids to school and then pick them up at around 4.30-5pm depending on the day. I then try not to work past 10pm but am probably not doing as good a job as I could. It is worth pointing out that SFE will pay up to 85% of your childcare as a grant.

    Good luck!
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by ByEeek)
    Yes it can be done. I am doing it. But it is bloomin hard work. I have been very lucky in that the two schools I have been placed with haven't minded me leaving shortly after the bell has gone. I leave for work at 7am leaving my wife to deliver kids to school and then pick them up at around 4.30-5pm depending on the day. I then try not to work past 10pm but am probably not doing as good a job as I could. It is worth pointing out that SFE will pay up to 85% of your childcare as a grant.

    Good luck!
    Hi there!
    Just picking up on a comment you made about SFE childcare grant. Can I ask if you claimed this? I was under the impression that I'd receive the full grant based on SFE calculator but have now realised that this might not be the case. I have contacted SFE who said they cannot provide an earnings threshold or advise how they calculate eligibility, I will just have to apply and see!! I am due to start in September and have 2 children, by that time they will be 10 months and 4 years. I will need FT childcare for my youngest and school clubs for my oldest. I honestly don't know if I'll be able to do the course unless I get it and am stressing. I'll be getting a bursary but it would take most of that if I don't get grant. Can you shed any light of your experiences? Thanks
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Pachamama2017)
    Hi there!
    Just picking up on a comment you made about SFE childcare grant. Can I ask if you claimed this? I was under the impression that I'd receive the full grant based on SFE calculator but have now realised that this might not be the case. I have contacted SFE who said they cannot provide an earnings threshold or advise how they calculate eligibility, I will just have to apply and see!! I am due to start in September and have 2 children, by that time they will be 10 months and 4 years. I will need FT childcare for my youngest and school clubs for my oldest. I honestly don't know if I'll be able to do the course unless I get it and am stressing. I'll be getting a bursary but it would take most of that if I don't get grant. Can you shed any light of your experiences? Thanks
    I don't see why you wouldn't get the childcare grant unless they have changed the rules. Check the website and see. Also, get your student finance application in now. It doesn't matter if you have been accepted or not and you can always change course provider at a later date without any fuss (I did). If your spouse earned less than about £25k in the tax year 14/15 you should be eligible for a full loan. You will also be eligible for an adult dependents grant and childcare depending on this year's rules. All the info is on the website. I don't have time to check myself, but get applying now. You certainly have to apply before end of May to qualify in time for September.

    Good luck!
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I am currently doing my secondary PGCE with 2 toddlers and it's very hard. The hardest part is the constant guilt as I hardly ever see them I have a lot of childcare help from family which is a life saver! I also work 16 hours a week (usually nights after school/every second weekend) because I didn't qualify for any grants or childcare help because my partner has a job. I found the uni and schools very unsupportive to be honest so make sure you could cope if you had to leave at 6am and return at 5 which is a possibility as I do that now (and some who don't have commitments travel for 10 minutes to their school). I think as long as your quite a strong willed person and have family support then go for it!
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Pgcegirl20)
    I am currently doing my secondary PGCE with 2 toddlers and it's very hard. The hardest part is the constant guilt as I hardly ever see them I have a lot of childcare help from family which is a life saver! I also work 16 hours a week (usually nights after school/every second weekend) because I didn't qualify for any grants or childcare help because my partner has a job. I found the uni and schools very unsupportive to be honest so make sure you could cope if you had to leave at 6am and return at 5 which is a possibility as I do that now (and some who don't have commitments travel for 10 minutes to their school). I think as long as your quite a strong willed person and have family support then go for it!
    Thank you PGCEgirl! I am worried about not seeing my girls, I know I'm going to find that really tough. But I spoke to the uni about it at interview and they assured me they'd do everything possible to get me a close placement, mainly because I will have to rely on nurseries/school clubs and I told them the earliest and latest I'd be able to leave for/from work which won't leave much room for travel if they want me to arrive by 8.30....here's hoping! I am worried about the childcare grant tho, my partner earns 24K. Would you mind saying whether your partner earns less/more than that as it may give me an idea if I'll qualify.... There's no way we would be able to afford FT fees...it's s small fortune!! Btw, we'll done to you so far! I guess we just have to focus on what it means long term 😕😊
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Pachamama2017)
    Thank you PGCEgirl! I am worried about not seeing my girls, I know I'm going to find that really tough. But I spoke to the uni about it at interview and they assured me they'd do everything possible to get me a close placement, mainly because I will have to rely on nurseries/school clubs and I told them the earliest and latest I'd be able to leave for/from work which won't leave much room for travel if they want me to arrive by 8.30....here's hoping! I am worried about the childcare grant tho, my partner earns 24K. Would you mind saying whether your partner earns less/more than that as it may give me an idea if I'll qualify.... There's no way we would be able to afford FT fees...it's s small fortune!! Btw, we'll done to you so far! I guess we just have to focus on what it means long term 😕😊
    Of course Hun it's just 8/9 month then it's done! it'll be over before you know it. They are quite strict with childcare help I think that it worked out your parnter needs to work part time and you can't work at all. Mine works 40 hours and he earns around 16/17k a year so we weren't entitled to anything. Its worth checking out again though incase it has changed this year. You can also take a student loan to help with costs of study/childcare etc. If you would consider that at all.
    If you go ahead make sure you are quite strict with the uni don't let them put you far away from home because I travel over an hour every morning and it's the worst part of the whole experience x
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    I'm sorry but I have to put in a word of caution.

    My husband had a dream of being a teacher. He did 4 years of uni and a PGCE with 3 small children - even with my help (I'm a housewife as they're all still little) he struggled a lot. It's not a matter of 'it's only 9 months'....once you're 'graduated' you're an NQT and expected to give 110% all of the time. There's constant assessment, there's so much workload (and my hubby was a science teacher, dread to think about english or other text based subjects), he worked late 7 nights a week at some points. He'd spend half terms and holidays working to catch up on stuff, and barely saw the kids. When he was home, he was distracted and thinking about work.

    He lasted 1 year. His course-mates, 3 of them still teach, out of 12! He graduated in 2015, and left in 2016.

    I'm sorry to sound negative, but you really have to call teaching a vocation. It's not a job, and you have to put it before everything else. After a few years, you may be able to drop down to a 0.6 or 0.8 rota, and this seems a lot more doable. But as a 1.0 full timer, it was not something we were willing to carry on. Our family life, as well as his mental and physical health, was suffering so much!
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Pachamama2017)
    Thank you PGCEgirl! I am worried about not seeing my girls, I know I'm going to find that really tough. But I spoke to the uni about it at interview and they assured me they'd do everything possible to get me a close placement, mainly because I will have to rely on nurseries/school clubs and I told them the earliest and latest I'd be able to leave for/from work which won't leave much room for travel if they want me to arrive by 8.30....here's hoping! I am worried about the childcare grant tho, my partner earns 24K. Would you mind saying whether your partner earns less/more than that as it may give me an idea if I'll qualify.... There's no way we would be able to afford FT fees...it's s small fortune!! Btw, we'll done to you so far! I guess we just have to focus on what it means long term 😕😊
    I think you would be pushing 8.30 arrival. Both placements I have been at start at 8.25 for form period. I am usually in at 7am in order to prep my lessons. My wife drops off and thankfully I can pick up before 5pm without too much stress. Then work like smoke after 8pm when they are in bed. It is mega tough but if you can do it, you can do anything. The payback is right now where I am enjoying quality time with my kids this Easter.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by aimlou83)
    I'm sorry but I have to put in a word of caution.

    My husband had a dream of being a teacher. He did 4 years of uni and a PGCE with 3 small children - even with my help (I'm a housewife as they're all still little) he struggled a lot. It's not a matter of 'it's only 9 months'....once you're 'graduated' you're an NQT and expected to give 110% all of the time. There's constant assessment, there's so much workload (and my hubby was a science teacher, dread to think about english or other text based subjects), he worked late 7 nights a week at some points. He'd spend half terms and holidays working to catch up on stuff, and barely saw the kids. When he was home, he was distracted and thinking about work.

    He lasted 1 year. His course-mates, 3 of them still teach, out of 12! He graduated in 2015, and left in 2016.

    I'm sorry to sound negative, but you really have to call teaching a vocation. It's not a job, and you have to put it before everything else. After a few years, you may be able to drop down to a 0.6 or 0.8 rota, and this seems a lot more doable. But as a 1.0 full timer, it was not something we were willing to carry on. Our family life, as well as his mental and physical health, was suffering so much!
    Thanks for your honesty. It's scary but useful info. I'm going into the course expecting to be extremely busy. I know it's going to be tough and I wish I didn't have to leave either of my children, especially my youngest who'll only be 10 months when the course starts. But we had her knowing this is what we'd have to do. I hope I'm not too naive in thinking I can do it to my detriment by spending the evening with them and working til late. Another plan is to do everything possible to secure a PT post following graduation and maybe consider supply if not, until my youngest is in school. I figure it'll be a super tough year for all of us but will then give us options in the long term and enable me to utilise my years of academic study doing something I love as opposed to working in an office job. I have taught at uni for a number of years PT too so know how time consuming planning and marking can be but also hope this experience will stand me in good stead. Again, hopefully not naive thinking! Anyway, if we don't get a childcare grant I won't be doing anything so I guess it's up to fate to decide (and student finance 😂)
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by ByEeek)
    I think you would be pushing 8.30 arrival. Both placements I have been at start at 8.25 for form period. I am usually in at 7am in order to prep my lessons. My wife drops off and thankfully I can pick up before 5pm without too much stress. Then work like smoke after 8pm when they are in bed. It is mega tough but if you can do it, you can do anything. The payback is right now where I am enjoying quality time with my kids this Easter.
    I told them the hours I could do at interview and they were OK with it. I really stressed that anything else would be a deal breaker as I simply wouldn't be able to do it but they assured me that it was workable.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Pachamama2017)
    Thanks for your honesty. It's scary but useful info. I'm going into the course expecting to be extremely busy. I know it's going to be tough and I wish I didn't have to leave either of my children, especially my youngest who'll only be 10 months when the course starts. But we had her knowing this is what we'd have to do. I hope I'm not too naive in thinking I can do it to my detriment by spending the evening with them and working til late. Another plan is to do everything possible to secure a PT post following graduation and maybe consider supply if not, until my youngest is in school. I figure it'll be a super tough year for all of us but will then give us options in the long term and enable me to utilise my years of academic study doing something I love as opposed to working in an office job. I have taught at uni for a number of years PT too so know how time consuming planning and marking can be but also hope this experience will stand me in good stead. Again, hopefully not naive thinking! Anyway, if we don't get a childcare grant I won't be doing anything so I guess it's up to fate to decide (and student finance 😂)
    It sounds like you're being realistic but I couldn't not say anything if you know what I mean. I see a lot of new PGCE students going in thinking it's all fab and loads of holidays and I could shake them. I would love nothing more than to work in a school, but I'll be going down the TA route I think before I commit to teacher training or anything else (if indeed i go down that route as I'm really scared of it now after my husband's experiences) and even then I'm going to wait until my eldest is in secondary before I take on anything near full time - he is currently in year 2, so not really a long time in grand scheme but sounds a really long time.....scares me more that he'll be in secondary in 4 years time! lol

    If you;re going in with your eyes open and a support network you should be able to cope for that 1-2 years before you can take control of it yourself. I think where we fell down is that despite having me at home, literally doing everything at home and for the children, we are not used to spending time apart. He had been a student for 4 years up to that point (working full time in the summers), and consequently had a shock when we were asked to spend up to 70 hours a week apart. It made him (and me) desperately unhappy. The actual teaching bit he loved, and would go back to in a heartbeat if we could afford for him to be part time (which we will be able to in a couple of years when I return to work) but at the moment we have had to put family ahead of finances or careers (which is as it should be and annoys me that both of us feel guilty and like we should explain to people who ask why he quit). It was all the added extra time and prep that he was expected to do, all the extra hours filling out forms and marking unnecessary tests week after week. As it is though, he managed to complete his NQT year which means that he is fully qualified and able to apply for any job once he feels he can (if he ever wants to) go back.

    And you should get childcare grant. You're given the same finance structure as an undergrad which is very generous, so 85% of whatever you pay should be refunded. There is an upper limit so be aware of that, but it's unlikely you'll exceed it. We never did even when our eldest was in full time M-F when I still worked.

    Sorry if I scared you, but like I say, I don't want people to fall into the same traps we did. Teaching is a brilliant profession, it's just a shame about all the other crap that you have to put up with!! Good luck, and I hope you succeed. Lord knows we need more good teachers to stick with the profession. I think this is why I get so passionate about it. I've seen it from all sides - my boys are currently in infant school (youngest will start reception in Sept) and are just starting out so it's not so bad at the moment as their school is lovely, but I just see so much uncertainty and bad management. It makes me angry and very worried about the future for all of us.

    Sorry for the ramble
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    Will you be richer or poorer than your parents?
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Quick reply
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.