Teach First or PCGE? Watch

Mike343784
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#21
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#21
One warning about Teach First - they take you on with the promise that you will be placed in a school, but they don't actually have placements lined up when they recruit - they just estimate how many teachers will be needed for each specialism. If there is less demand for your subject than expected, Teach First can and will simply withdraw the place - their terms and conditions say that they can withdraw a place at any time at their sole discretion.

I was told two days before I was due to start full-time training in June 2017 that they hadn't found a school for me and so I could switch from primary to secondary maths, or leave the programme. I want to be a primary teacher so clearly this wasn't an acceptable offer for me and I had to leave the programme. I've since found out that this is a regular problem with some of the more popular choices where there is less of a teacher shortage, such as primary.
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Muttley79
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#22
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#22
(Original post by Skyewoods)
Teach First
Learning through practical experience instead of theory
Experience from day 1. You'll have more experience and knowledge by the end your NQT year compared to your university peers
Build relationship with your students and see they grown throughout the year
Get the PGDE (advanced PGCE) completely paid for
No need to do apply for or do university interviews, you get automatically accepted
Working alongside someone of the brightest and most driven graduates from top uni's
Keep career options open and let's you develop a large network in and out of teaching
Being part of the largest graduate employer and the prestige that comes with it
Subsidised masters in education leadership with a guaranteed place
Accelerated career progression by completing the Teach First programme
.
I totally disagree with most of your positives - that's not how it works around here. 'prestige' - ha! It's a very poor preparation for a teaching career.
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Purmerend
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#23
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#23
(Original post by Muttley79)
I totally disagree with most of your positives - that's not how it works around here. 'prestige' - ha! It's a very poor preparation for a teaching career.
Agreed.

It completely astounds me how people see Teach First as the golden chalet to the entry of teaching. Don't get me wrong. I know some great teachers who entered the profession through Teach First, but they are by far the minority.

Teach First was originally conceived as a way to get ex-service personnel into teaching to fill gaps, and as the gaps have become bigger, so has the marketing for Teach First. It has more dropouts than any other form of ITE because you are dropped in the deep end and trainees end up drowning.

For me, the university led PGCE is the best way into teaching. The biggest problem with School Direct and SCITTs is that when you need to let off steam, there's nowhere to really go. At least if you are on a uni led course, you can go there. Plus it's a nice break from school during your training year.
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rachellandsberg
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#24
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#24
I am in my second year of TF and honestly its a fabulous opportunity. Yes, its hard and yes, the hours are long, but so is regular teaching. The thing i love most is that I work in schools where i can actually see the difference i am making to the children who have unusually difficult lives. Also, you get paid straight off the bat, it has an amazing reputation and makes you very employable and finally, its a challenge if youre up for it.
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NTU_93
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#25
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#25
I took the Teach First route and I think there are pros and cons and depends on what kind of person you are as to which you’ll thrive in. With a PGCE you’re very much uni based, learning the pedagogy with some placements throughout the year. You don’t have classes that just belong to you so it’s not particularly very high stakes in terms of responsibility. You are also observed and supervised a lot more as well so there’s a lot less that can go wrong. On the other hand, with my QTS year with Teach First, I was thrown into classes that were purely my own on a 22 hour a week timetable on day one. No supervision, hardly any observations. The “throwing you into the deep end nature” of the course, I believe, means that you encounter a lot more in your first year than you would do in any other route into teaching. The classes are your own responsibility therefore you will be held accountable for their progress. This makes your NQT year a lot easier: those that don’t go down the Teach First route, I have noticed, find the NQT year harder because there’s more responsibility involved and whilst you aren’t doing so much uni work there’s a lot more marking and planning that you have to do for yourself. So it depends what you are like as a person. If you thrive under pressure then Teach First is definitely for you. I am in my NQT 1 year of teaching and have left my teach first school and am the Deputy Head of Maths at a Grammar school which I love and I don’t think I would have gotten that position so soon had it not been for all the challenging experiences I had at my Teach First school.
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Muttley79
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#26
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#26
(Original post by CantsBants)
Hi, just finishing my second year of my English Literature degree and would love to go into teaching, but I'm quite unaware of the schemes available to get into teaching. I know Teach First offer about a 20K starting salary whilst learning/teaching, but the PCGE comes with a £9000 bursary (considering I get a 2:1 in my course!). I feel quite in the dark here, so if somebody that has gone through these courses could let me know how they got on that'd be much appreciated! Is one particularly harder or better than the other? Does one lead on to better job opportunities (outside teaching too?), and which works out with a better salary?

Thanks!
PLEASE do not touch 'Teach First' - it's an appalling way of training. Minimal support and maximum stress - I've been asked to support a number of 'failing' teachers on this scheme.

Do a proper PGCE where you will get proper support and can gradually increase the amount of teaching you do. These courses are run by experts who know what they are doing.

[Incidentally, many teachers find the whole notion of Teach First quite insulting - ie Teach First before you go on to do a proper job!]
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