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How much notice to withdraw from GTP?

(11 Posts)
learningaswego Fri 02-Nov-12 09:33:18

Having a complete mare with a gtp course that I started in Sept and am going to withdraw.

Colleagues have been very kind and supportive but I have selected the wrong subject and want to apply for a pgce in another subject.

Want to make leaving as quick and painless as possible - does anyone know how much notice I have to give?

My contract says a month, but I am an unqualified teacher that has a fully trained one in the same room as me at all times that to be frank could do a much better job teaching the classes I have been teaching than I have been. Seems ridiculous that they would have me continue to teach these classes when they have an outstanding teacher in the room who can deliver the material in a much more engaging format.

Need to tell the school and my training provider so any knowledge of the procedures would be really helpful so I can try and limit how much of a pain I am to the school.

All comments appreciated.

cricketballs Fri 02-Nov-12 09:45:40

Everyone feels like this (even years in wink) so before you do withdraw as I would imagine that this may cause you problems in gaining a place on a PGCE course can I ask -

what is the current subject you are teaching?
what subject would you prefer to teach?
what qualifications/experience have you in both of these subjects?
what, exactly are the problems you are experiencing?
why do you think that changing your main subject will change the situation?
once you qualify, you are a 'teacher' and not a maths teacher, an english teacher etc as any head can direct you to teach any subject

learningaswego Fri 02-Nov-12 14:28:53

I'm currently teaching secondary science, but my plan is to teach secondary maths. I've got a physics degree, but having not done biology or chemistry since gcse myself, there is such a huge gap in my subject knowledge (it is taking me more time to learn the material I am going to teach for the lesson than actually planning the lesson itself!). Funnily enough my degree was mostly maths. I have spoken to head of maths admissions at the uni I'd like to go to, and they have said that they wouldn't count it against you, providing you did not fail QTS.

I take the point once you qualify you can apply to teach whatever you want, but I just can't see myself completing this training - not seeing dd as it is let alone what life will be like when I'm taking more lessons.

It's really awkward because my training provider and mentor in the school are both so lovely and I just want to address leaving in the most sensitive and professional way possible.

- Have you had any experience of this? Do you know of how much notice an unqualified teacher needs to give?

cricketballs Fri 02-Nov-12 14:42:22

sorry but I idea about notice periods for GTP.

From reading your reply the one area that concerns me is you say that you are not seeing your DD as it is currently; this will be the same for not only during your PGCE year but your NQT year and a couple of years beyond that. This is not just due to subject knowledge, but changing specs, reflecting on how you taught something and changing it for another group/year; reports, marking etc therefore changing subject may not be the saviour that you may think it can be.

Can I ask why you went for science instead of Maths in the first place or is it since you started that you have decided that you would prefer to teach maths?

There is also the funding aspect to consider (as well as the referee issue) heads can be very nasty about things like this and they do talk to each other informally. Can you afford to wait until next September to start PGCE? Can you afford the fees/not receiving a wage?

cricketballs Fri 02-Nov-12 14:43:41

have you asked your mentor if it is possible to switch subjects within the school?

cricketballs Fri 02-Nov-12 15:38:09

meant to say no idea about notice periods!

learningaswego Fri 02-Nov-12 21:37:58

No I do take your point about pgce's being just as hard/ worse - I think until you start training you have NO REAL IDEA about how hard a profession teaching is.
Because Maths is in need they will cover my fees but dropping out of this gtp would mean that any other job's earnings for this year would have to help support me next year as well. Thanks to my partner we could scrape it by.

I have raised this before as an issue with my mentor and it wasn't suggested that maths would be an option. It sucks that I will be messing about with the school, but I think far better I leave early on then later. Maybe my funding will go towards an NQT or a teaching assistant? I'm sure in a time of cuts they will find a way to spend my funding moeny. Just really worried about how I'm going to tell them without starting world war 3. I would have never applied/ signed up if I didn't think I could finish, but I genuinely don't think I could.

Phineyj Fri 02-Nov-12 22:52:38

A month's notice isn't very much - I'm teaching as an unqualified teacher and am on a GTP programme and my contract says two months, or three in the summer term.

There is no nice way to give notice and I think personally the school will lose the training grant. Schools can't just shift money from one budget to another like that, and the training money comes directly from the Dept. of Ed. I think.

However -- if you're sure teaching's for you and it's just the subject, I think you should consider sticking it out, especially if there's any chance you might be feeling a bit low about it at the moment. I've found the GTP incredibly stressful and I'm also having to teach a second subject that I'm not keen at all on, but I see it as a means to an end.

I really do think it is rare to have such a supportive school, training provider and mentors. You could end up swapping it for a horrible school for a subject you like, but the basic issues with workload and confidence would be the same.

I do think your confidence will grow during the course, too. GTPs normally teach so few lessons at the beginning that I think it can feel a bit scary. I was dropped in the deep end with little support but the benefit was I did loads of teaching and had genuine responsibility right from the beginning so it built my confidence (I can relate to what you are saying about feeling like the teacher in the room with you could do a better job -- I feel like that at my contrasting placement, but that's the point of training isn't it - if you were already an expert you wouldn't need to be on the course).

Obviously it's your decision but do talk it over with your training provider before doing anything hasty.

Clary Sat 03-Nov-12 20:42:47

Is there any way you could negotiate to teach some maths lessons at your school as well?

I agree, a good school and supportive mentor etc is well worth having.

FWIW I did my GTP last year and it was the hardest most hard-working year of my life. I teach subjects I love, true, but I hadn't had much to do with them for years and years apart from in the previous 12 months.

Teaching maths and science is not that unusual, and the GTP (mine anyway) is not subject specific or not very much if that makes sense.

Phineyj Sun 04-Nov-12 10:12:35

I agree Clary -- my GTP couldn't really be less subject-specific -- here I am teaching a subject I haven't given a thought since the age of about 13 while one of my (qualified) colleagues reluctantly teaches the subject I would have been quite happy to take on (we laugh about the ridiculousness of this) but it seems to be purely down to practicality and the timetable what you get. My teaching of my specialist subject has actually got worse during the GTP because of the hours and hours I've had to spend reading up on the other thing!

It's really a case of eyes on the prize isn't it -- once you're qualified you're qualified and then you can negotiate, hopefully. I also don't think the experience of having to quickly brief yourself and teach something unfamiliar is bad for you -- quite the reverse -- I'm sure there'll be future scenarios where it comes in handy.

learningaswego I bet there are some bits of maths you could cover, even if they won't give you an official timetable in it. It is a big advantage that it's a compulsory subject. Depending on your school they may participate in Maths Challenge or similar and need helpers? Standard 8!!

riskit4abiskit Sun 04-Nov-12 10:57:35

Sorry to sound harsh but lots of people apply for your opportunity and can't get one , lots of people these days apply for pgce and can't get on either.
IF teaching is still for you, stick with it. If not, don't go applying for a pgce! Subject means nothing. Many many people I know don't teach the subject they officially trained in.

Your mentor sounds lovely, if they were horrible I would be a bit more sympathetic, but u are going to be letting them down and causing a lot of trouble. Our gtp student had her own classes by the mid placement so for all you know the timetable has been organised to help you, landing others with more than their usual share of difficult classes, which I'm sure they are willing to do, but.would be a bit grrr if you left now.

I have been a mentor myself so am a bit biased here, because I know how much time and emotional support trainees need, which I am happy to give, in fact its the best bit of the job! If a trainee said.they thought teaching wasn't for them, I would say fair enough, but if they left to move to a different course, I would feel frustrated!

Btw its a lie that your training year and nqt are the hardest and its gets easier! The hard bit is the second and third yearswith full timetables, more responsibilities and less support. So please think carefully about this too.

I honestly don't sound mean in my post and hope that you make the right decision for you. Good luck!

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