jtets
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Currently I’m working as a TA in London, I’m enjoying it so far and although I’m not 100% sure on whether I’d like to do teaching long-term, I would still like to do a training programme. The only issue is that I’m having trouble deciding the best option.

For me, Teach First has the following pros:
•Fast Track application since I’m a TA
•A summer work placement/internship in a top firm so I could potentially create an opening for a switch in career if I decide teaching is not favourable after two years.
•Stay in the school I’m currently working in for the whole academic year rather than go to another school for 6-12 weeks
•No extra tuition fee loans
•Less essays than PGCE

PGCE pros:
•Slightly more support before teaching classes by myself?
•£12k maintenance loan + £26k Bursary in the training year (compared to Teach First where unqualified teachers in outer London get a salary of £21k minimum)
•Exempt from council tax (so slightly less expenses)
•Proper learning about pedagogy
•More support from the education provider

Yes, I understand most of these pros aren’t teaching related but at the end of the day I will be teaching, planning, marking no matter which course I pick.
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SarcAndSpark
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I did a PGCE, but know a few people who did Teach First instead. I think both routes are fine if everything is going well- but I've also heard some Teach First horror stories where people are left without support in very tricky situations. If you are doing a PGCE, and e.g. your mentor leaves and you are getting no support in school, the uni will find somewhere else for you to go. If you're doing Teach First, you are often left in placement even if it has become completely unsuitable.

If things go wrong, the PGCE is usually a better support system.

Obviously planning for the worst case scenario isn't for everyone, but things do often go wrong for people on ITT courses, often due to no fault of the trainees.

Have you considered Schools Direct as a sort of middle ground between the options?
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Get into Teaching
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(Original post by jtets)
Currently I’m working as a TA in London, I’m enjoying it so far and although I’m not 100% sure on whether I’d like to do teaching long-term, I would still like to do a training programme. The only issue is that I’m having trouble deciding the best option.

For me, Teach First has the following pros:
•Fast Track application since I’m a TA
•A summer work placement/internship in a top firm so I could potentially create an opening for a switch in career if I decide teaching is not favourable after two years.
•Stay in the school I’m currently working in for the whole academic year rather than go to another school for 6-12 weeks
•No extra tuition fee loans
•Less essays than PGCE

PGCE pros:
•Slightly more support before teaching classes by myself?
•£12k maintenance loan + £26k Bursary in the training year (compared to Teach First where unqualified teachers in outer London get a salary of £21k minimum)
•Exempt from council tax (so slightly less expenses)
•Proper learning about pedagogy
•More support from the education provider

Yes, I understand most of these pros aren’t teaching related but at the end of the day I will be teaching, planning, marking no matter which course I pick.
Hi jtets

You may apply for both, and I would encourage you to do so.

I'm concerned regarding your point on the fewer essays with Teach First. They offer the PGDE, and as this carries higher Masters level degree credits, you may find yourself up to your eyes in essays!

Additionally, I think a good litmus test would be - would you want your children taught by you at the moment? As an employment based course, such as Teach First, does lend you a lot of responsibility for the classes you are allocated.

Further, are you willing to relocate from London? Some Teach First applicants are asked to relocate.

Please do register with Get into Teaching for bespoke guidance and support on choosing the best provider for your needs. Call 0800 389 2500 or register here.

All the very best for a successful application,

Jane
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ByEeek
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I was very cynical about Teach First. It seemed to frame itself as a back door to getting into big business than filling the teacher hole.

If you are keen to teach do a PGCE.
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jtets
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
Have you considered Schools Direct as a sort of middle ground between the options?
My bad, I should’ve made this clearer. I’m willing to stay at the school I’m working at and they offer Teach First (salary) or School Direct (PGCE) (tuition fee)

(Original post by Get into Teaching)
I'm concerned regarding your point on the fewer essays with Teach First. They offer the PGDE, and as this carries higher Masters level degree credits, you may find yourself up to your eyes in essays!
Ok so I assumed there were no essays since Teach First has barely any information regarding essays in their Programme details but I’ve had a deeper read and there’s one source that suggests trainees had to do 6 essays which is concerning for me since I’m not particularly fond of essays and I only had to do two in my degree. I think what I’m now hoping for is some balance between actual school work and essay work because I feel that I may end up neglecting one side.
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Get into Teaching
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(Original post by jtets)
Ok so I assumed there were no essays since Teach First has barely any information regarding essays in their Programme details but I’ve had a deeper read and there’s one source that suggests trainees had to do 6 essays which is concerning for me since I’m not particularly fond of essays and I only had to do two in my degree. I think what I’m now hoping for is some balance between actual school work and essay work because I feel that I may end up neglecting one side.
Hi jtets

I would have thought that source you've found to be accurate. As Teach First have additional Masters level credits with their course, they should have more assignments. Typically on a School Direct / SCITT or University led, non-employment based teacher training course, I would expect aspiring teachers to be completing around 4 assignments. Often these are two 'normal' essays on pedagogy and then two others more practically focused, like a research project or a creation of a SOW and analysis of it. All course providers are different though, and you may find that your school will offer a QTS only option.

I think discussing this with one of the Get into Teaching advisers would be really helpful in choosing the best provider for you.

Jane
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sp00kymcflukey
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Teachfirst is risky, you could end up thrown in the middle of a horrible and u supportive department/school..this is possible via ogce but usually more chains of support to help if things change suddenly or mentorship becomes hostile. I'd go PGCE any day of the week because of the academic focus as well as more support and networking opportunities. Though
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FormerTeacher
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jtets - slightly biased but my niece completed TF a few years ago. She is bright, resilient and hard working (again, slightly biased!). Her words half way through the first year were "SUCCESS! This is the first week I have only cried once!" - she told me many of her friends and colleagues who had also completed TF were drowning under the strain. She completed her 2 years and left, to become an HLTA. She said if she had had her time again to choose, she would have chosen PGCE through a Uni or SD/SCITT.
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chloea1920
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Teach First is a fantastic option but I would imagine that a PGCE would offer slightly more flexibility in terms of location and school you end up teaching at. My friend wants to be a music teacher but teach first only offers placements in London which isn't ideal for her. Obviously, though it is completely up to you!
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mgi
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(Original post by jtets)
Currently I’m working as a TA in London, I’m enjoying it so far and although I’m not 100% sure on whether I’d like to do teaching long-term, I would still like to do a training programme. The only issue is that I’m having trouble deciding the best option.

For me, Teach First has the following pros:
•Fast Track application since I’m a TA
•A summer work placement/internship in a top firm so I could potentially create an opening for a switch in career if I decide teaching is not favourable after two years.
•Stay in the school I’m currently working in for the whole academic year rather than go to another school for 6-12 weeks
•No extra tuition fee loans
•Less essays than PGCE

PGCE pros:
•Slightly more support before teaching classes by myself?
•£12k maintenance loan + £26k Bursary in the training year (compared to Teach First where unqualified teachers in outer London get a salary of £21k minimum)
•Exempt from council tax (so slightly less expenses)
•Proper learning about pedagogy
•More support from the education provider

Yes, I understand most of these pros aren’t teaching related but at the end of the day I will be teaching, planning, marking no matter which course I pick.
PGCE every time.
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