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Becoming a Primary school teacher

(13 Posts)
OctoberMoon Tue 24-Sep-13 00:08:07


After a little advice. I'm currently self employed, about to start a new business, but after being self employed for the last 6 years, I hate the uncertainty. The only other career I've ever felt slightly drawn towards was primary school teaching.

I was fortunate enough to attend an excellent secondary school, I was also stupid enough to go off the rails & fuck my opportunity up. I am academic, always enjoyed learning, until I got into year 10 and got in with the wrong crowd outside of school, I began skipping school a lot, paid no attention and did not revise one thing at all for my GCSE's. I ended up with D's in maths & science. Can't remember if I got a C or D in English, where can I find this out? I didn't do my A levels.

If I do explore the option of becoming a primary school teacher (now that I'm older & wiser and keen to learn again) where would I start? An access course? Would I have to sit all my GCSE's again? Have I really fucked it up with having no decent GCSE's or A levels?

BlackMogul Tue 24-Sep-13 00:39:13

I think you will have to have a GCSE in Maths and English. I think you would need to resit these.You may also need 3 others. Why not have a look at Education degrees for primary phase and see what they might require of a mature student? I am sure the government has tightened up the qualifications for teachers. I don't think you can be a classroom assistant without the above GCSE's either.

BlackMogul Tue 24-Sep-13 00:42:29

Just found the web site nationalcareersservice run by the Govt. Look at the primary teacher section. As I said above, but you need a science too!

sashh Tue 24-Sep-13 10:46:18

You need GCSE English, maths and science.

Then you either need a degree to do a PGCE or do a teaching degree that incorporates QTS.

As a mature student you may be accepted on to the course or you may have to do an access course. You may be able to do the access course and GCSEs at the same time.

Oh and don't expect certainty in a teaching career.

crazymum53 Tue 24-Sep-13 14:17:28

You need grade Cs for English, Maths and Science.
Usually they expect experience of working with children before starting a degree course. A levels are usually needed for a degree course but they may accept mature students who have attended an Access course.
Another alternative may be to look for Teaching Assistant courses at your local college.

Oceansurf Tue 24-Sep-13 14:24:06

You would have to redo all your qualifications before you'd even be accepted on a PGCE, and places are hard to come by. (seem to recall we were told 4500 had applied for our uni course, only 150 were accepted)

BTW, teaching jobs are hard to come by. I'm still working supply, as are 5 of my friends off the course (been qualified for two years now) as there are just no permanent jobs going at all. Worth bearing in mind. Most teachers just stay in the same school and are not interested in progression (as in to Deputy Head/Head), which means that there are few openings. Scary thing is, as time moves on, our banding goes up which means we are even less likely to secure a position, as schools only seem to want cheap NQT's. (pity I only managed to secure a one year temp contract as an NQT) Although this is probably why experienced teachers don't move either. Catch 22.

I would also say, being a primary school teacher is not easy. At all.

Rummikub Tue 24-Sep-13 14:33:05

Suggest you check out volunteering in a primary school. Make sure it is what you want. You will need grade C in English language, maths and a science. Followed by an access course for a year. Then a 3 year or 4 year degree with qts. You could do a degree followed by a 1 year PGCE in primary. It's very difficult to get onto a primary PGCE, so consider the qts degrees.

You might be able to get onto a GCSE course now, contact your local college.

Findingtime6 Tue 24-Sep-13 19:36:42

I have started looking into the same thing or another career change possibly physio or o.c. However have decided to try teaching myself and found out the following -

You can do an equivalent course that covers - gcse level maths,English & science companies such as A star teachers and others do these courses, they also do just the exams and send you the course syllibus and you study yourself.

You also need your degree - you could do an open university degree followed by the Pgce. That means you can carry on working until the pgce which is full time.

I think if motivated enough you could study both at the same time to save you time , if you are short on it like me ( I am 40 agh !!!)

Last point I have felt slightly despondent and unmotivated by the fact that I am old ish and is it worth it etc etc. however I have come to the conclusion - why not ! You only have one life , even if it doesn't work out you have tried. There is no true failure expect of someone who gives up and never tries in the first place.

You could turn out to be the best teacher and get a job straight away, think positive , go for it and the rest will sort itself out. Jump and the net appears and all that.

Good luck !!!

Findingtime6 Tue 24-Sep-13 19:39:40

Ps yes and get teaching assistant experience by volunteering. But schools usually crying out for volunteers even if just for reading help. There are the Kumon study centres that might employ you to help or you could volunteer there if you can't find a school.lastly if you find it hard to volunteer in a school a pre school/ nursery might welcome the help.

OctoberMoon Thu 26-Sep-13 00:01:30

thanks for all the help. it's a very new thing for me so don't really understand all this QTS stuff! it would be great if i could do an access course with my gcse's alongside of it, will have to look into it.

supply teaching sounds good to me. my neighbour does supply teaching and she says she enjoys choosing the days she works etc.. then again, her husband is well off so she can pick and choose without worrying.

volunteering is the only sensible thing to do, i'm not sure i definitely want to go down the teaching route and this will help me make my mind up.

what degree do i need to do before i do a pgce? is it an education degree?

Findingtime i love your attitude, it's so refreshing. chances are you'll be working until you are 65 so you have got years ahead of you in the workplace, why not retrain and do something you think you'll enjoy?

i don't think any jobs have any certainty at the moment. i can either sit and twiddle my thumbs just ticking by or i can seriously consider a career that offers some sort of prospects.

Ragusa Thu 26-Sep-13 00:12:54

this link should help. Before you can start a pgce (postgrad) or b.ed (first degree) course, as well as the quals already mentioned you would need to pass skills tests in literacy and numeracy.

Rummikub Thu 26-Sep-13 00:25:41

October, if you want to do primary teaching then choose a BA or BSc with QTS. The QTS means qualified teacher status, so you won't need to do a PGCE after. If you want to study a degree without QTS then you will need to pick a degree with some national curriculum subject content, such as history, sciences, maths, English, IT.

It used to be possible to study for access alongside your GCSEs; I don't think this is possible anymore as access courses now require you to have already achieved a level 2 in English and maths. Have you got a level 2 in these? If so, then yes you can build onto the access and gain the GCSE you need to. Remember you will also need a science.

Some universities offer courses like AMFIT, (alternative maths for intending teachers) which you can do instead of the GCSE in maths. Universities will have open days happening now, go along and see what's on offer.

Rummikub Thu 26-Sep-13 00:30:54

Findingtime, it is never too late. You are young enough to change your career. I once helped someone change their career at 50 plus! Again volunteer work is essential. Contact the volunteer office at your local hospital. You can actually request a particular dept too. Have a look at the NHS website, lots of useful info. Be careful about physio, there aren't enough jobs around anymore. You might need to consider setting up private practice if want to be a physiotherapist.

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