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Training as a primary school teacher

(64 Posts)
MillieMoodle Thu 12-Jan-17 17:25:14

I'm hoping for some advice please grin

DH has decided he wants a career change from management accountant to primary school teacher. We've established that he'll need to do science GCSE as he only got a grade D when he took it first time around (many moons ago and before he realised he actually needed to work at school!). He doesn't have any A-levels or a degree. He's got an advanced GNVQ in business studies and AAT which is equivalent to NVQ level 4. He wants to do a B.Ed at our local university, starting in September. Does he need to get A-levels as well, or can he do an undergraduate degree with just the GCSEs?

Also, what's the best way to go about getting work experience?

Thanks in advance!

partystress Thu 12-Jan-17 17:40:54

Please get the work experience first. I did this same career change. If I had really known what it was like, I wouldn't have done it. I'm glad I didn't know, because the seven years I spent teaching were amazing, but there is no doubt my DCs suffered. It is not a family friendly job. There are signs of change, and by the time your DH graduates things could be a lot better. However, see it warts and all as it is now - don't just visit a school from 9-3, really get a handle on what needs to be done around those hours.

MillieMoodle Thu 12-Jan-17 17:51:13

Thanks party. How would he get the full experience first? Would he need to volunteer in a school or work as a TA first?

I come from a family of primary school teachers (mum, aunt and grandmother) so am aware it's a vocation and that it takes over every aspect of your life but he's so unhappy doing what he does at the moment. He's bored and his heart's not really in it. He wants to do something where he thinks he'd be able to make a difference. Is that mad?

JennyOnAPlate Thu 12-Jan-17 17:54:37

From what I understand from a friend who has recently begun retraining, he's very unlikely to get a place on a course without some relevant experience.

leccybill Thu 12-Jan-17 17:58:54

Definitely, definitely shadow a teacher for a week. All 60 odd hours. Get them to text him when they finally close the laptop at night, normally after 11pm.

I get the desire to 'give something back' is a strong one but the job itself is unrelenting and frustrating and yes, your family's every waking moment will revolve around it.

CandODad Thu 12-Jan-17 18:02:05

If you have children in a school approach the school. He needs to explain what he wants to do, why and make sure that he doesn't spend time in your child's class if he really wants it to be taken seriously.

If not he would do well emailing a few local schools at a time explaininf what he wants and when and wait and see if they get back to him.

As for entry requirements it's down to what the uni will take to be fair but if he registers his interest with the college of teachers web site he will be emailed when an evening meeting is local where all local units attend and he can get advice there too.

MillieMoodle Thu 12-Jan-17 18:08:09

Leccy thanks for the advice. How would he shadow a teacher for a week? Can he just ask a local school if they'd let him?

I am aware that our whole life would have to revolve around the school, and that, unless he can get a job in our child's school, balancing work and family life will be difficult.

Is someone able to list the kind of stuff you have to do outside of classroom hours? I've tried to remember what my mum had to do but it was years ago and I was only young! I just remember her working late at night on lesson plans but don't really remember what it actually involved. It would really help to have an idea of the work he'd have to do on his "own" time.

MillieMoodle Thu 12-Jan-17 18:10:18

CandODad thanks for the info, that's really useful. He is going to contact DS1's school tomorrow to see if they can point him in the right direction for some experience.

CandODad Thu 12-Jan-17 18:19:00

Meetings, parent meetings, displays, refresh displays, mark, moderate, parents evenings, set up "innovative" learn experiences, plan, revise planning, IEP reports and follow up.
I'm sure others will be along with more.

If he can he would be best served to get experience from a school not as local. I am doing long term cover as an NQT in a very different area to anywhere I did teaching practice at.

CandODad Thu 12-Jan-17 18:22:36

Make resources

MillieMoodle Thu 12-Jan-17 18:23:34

CandODad are you newly qualified then? What made you decide to go into teaching (if you don't mind me asking!)?

mamaduckbone Thu 12-Jan-17 18:53:28

He could contact local schools explaining his situation and ask if he could shadow / observe for a few days as a starting point - I would second the poster who suggested getting experience before making a decision.

Luckster Thu 12-Jan-17 19:46:09

I don't have A Levels and undertook a degree to change career into teaching. No, you don't HAVE to have A Levels, but it does depend on entry requirements for the course.

I'd definitely go for it. I love my job and smile every day I go into school. Yes it does take over somewhat but I wouldn't have it any other way.

CandODad Thu 12-Jan-17 20:04:55

I am VERY newly qualified. After thirteen years lining other people's pockets in retail, managing other stores two hours away because they can't get local managers, being called at 2am in the morning and being told I had to cancel holidays at short notice I decided to make a move. I went into my children's school but today at the other end of the KS and then became a Cover Supervisor in secondary on supply once I had a firm offer from a uni and could give my notice. Making the decision to qualifying took three year but I did already have a degree and my required GCSE's.

MillieMoodle Thu 12-Jan-17 22:02:26

DH has had 20 years of working in finance/accounting and his heart has never really been in it. One week every month is completely written off with work. October half term / bonfire night and new years days all fall on important work dates so we can never do family stuff then. He's just reached the stage where the thought of spending the next thirty years doing the same thing is utterly terrifying. He wants to do something he'll enjoy and he's thought about teaching a lot over the years.

ceeveebee Thu 12-Jan-17 22:15:45

Has he considered lecturing at an accountancy college i.e. Teaching students to pass their AAT? Or does he have his heart set on primary teaching (I'm an accountant and a couple of my ex-colleagues have gone down this route)

DoraDunn Thu 12-Jan-17 22:21:51

Has he spoken to the university? When is the ucas (or whatever it is these days) cut off? I think it's around now is it not? Is he aware that BEd courses are massively over subscribed and therefore most admissions tutors will be looking for some school based experience.

Fixatif Thu 12-Jan-17 22:26:12

It's not enough to want to teach because you think it might suit your lifestyle and you'd get bonfire night off.

You need to actively want to teach.

You haven't said anything about why your DH wants to teach primary age children. What makes him think he'd enjoy it? Be any good at it? What experience of working with primary age children does he have? (nb being a parent doesn't count.)

DoraDunn Thu 12-Jan-17 22:30:10

It's not at all family friendly. I'm probably going to out myself here but I left teaching and retrained as an accountant! grin
Much more flexible and family friendly!

CandODad Fri 13-Jan-17 07:05:07

What job is truly family friendly though? Anything with decent pay involves bringing some form of baggage home with you.

DoraDunn Fri 13-Jan-17 09:55:23

It was never seeing sports day or assemblies or special stuff like that that got me down. Plus giving up every Sunday to planning and prep. My DH works long hours, often away from home and weekends are precious.
Plus being unable to take annual leave when they were ill. When your husband is in New York, you have zero other family and your 2yr old and 4yr old are both ill then you're stuck. Or at least I was.

Redlocks28 Fri 13-Jan-17 19:33:34

Why does he want to teach?

I've seen many students on teaching practice who were there because they hated their previous job. None have lasted long. You need to go into teaching because you actually want to be a teacher.

MillieMoodle Fri 13-Jan-17 22:23:44

He wants to work with children, he wants to do a job where he feels he could make a difference to someone's life and he wants to get involved in sports in primary school. He has just started coaching under 6 football at a football club and is more enthusiastic and passionate about it that I've ever seen him be about anything except his football team!

He is now thinking that he might try to get a teaching assistant role first to get an idea of what's involved in teaching and then if he still wants to do it, study for a degree while working as a TA, then go on to do teacher training.

imip Fri 13-Jan-17 22:32:37

This is my plan also op. I'd like to do early years teaching and hope to work as a ta first to see if it is for me. As much as it's be convenient to work at the dcs school, I have a dc with ASD and I don't think it would be helpful/difficult with a close involvement with the school. Though I have 4 dc at the school currently, and can also see some benefit there!!!

ellanutella8 Fri 13-Jan-17 22:36:46

Don't do it. Nothing is ever good enough. You are expected to perform miracles by improving results with ever diminishing resources for children with ever increasing needs.

I have worked 14 hours today and have a list as long as my arm to do Sunday. This is with my resolve to have a better work life balance in 2017.

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