About the course
Why should I join the CTA?
We believe that the single most significant factor of a child’s success in school is the quality of their teachers. The Catholic Teaching Alliance is, therefore, dedicated to developing staff with high expectations and a clear understanding of how to create a learning environment in which their students can flourish. Our focus is on developing teaching and learning through innovative ideas, creativity and intelligent collaboration. Our strong and supportive network is based on the shared values of our schools and colleges.
We at the CTA are passionate about developing a generation of outstanding teachers and want to provide as much support as we can to ensure committed, enthusiastic and capable people make it on to our teacher training scheme. We offer excellent teacher training in partnership with Goldsmiths, with all courses resulting in a PGCE qualification.
We run an extensive CPD programme including two Early Career Conferences in the autumn and summer terms and School Study Visits in the spring term, providing networking opportunities and the chance to observe teaching in other schools within the Catholic Teaching Alliance, in line with both your university studies and personal areas of development. Opportunities for school-based research and reflection, along with the sharing of outstanding expertise within a business-like model form the heart of our work.
An induction programme will be provided in school to supplement your university provision. The weekly sessions will cover a range of topics relevant to your training, including safeguarding; lesson planning, marking, and pastoral aspects such as the role of a form tutor. You will be fully involved in the life of the school attending parents' evenings and participating in school trips,
About the University Course
Courses last for one full academic year (September - July) and involve two placements (please see additional information below). Successful completion leads to a PGCE with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).
This secondary programme prepares you to teach English. You are shown how to plan, resource and organise lessons, as well as how to monitor, record, evaluate and assess students. Practical workshops include specialist drama, voice and media studies sessions, enabling you to develop a broad repertoire of teaching skills.
English at Goldsmiths
You will attend university training days with other School Direct and PGCE students. On the Tuition Fee routes you will carry out academic assignments leading to the award of 60 masters level credits.
At the CTA we are looking for candidates who can support our shared vision: Growing Teachers, Growing Learners, Growing Schools.
When applying please select your preferred school. All applications are vetted upon receipt. Once your application has passed this process you will be invited to an interview at the location to which you have applied.
The interview day will include a tour of the school and a formal interview, which is usually conducted by a Senior Leader, Head of Department and the CTA Co-ordinator (where available). Some time may also be spent in a class with the Head of Department where a school can arrange this.
We follow the Enhanced route for School Direct with Goldsmiths University with all of the interview tasks being conducted in school. A member of the teaching team from Goldsmiths may also attend. You will be asked to complete a number of tasks including a numeracy, literacy and subject knowledge task. Further details will be provided if you are invited to interview.
You will have the opportunity to ask any questions about the Catholic Teaching Alliance, School and the School Direct Programme at interview.
After interview, the University and the Lead School will jointly reach a final decision regarding any offer.
Candidates usually apply to schools that are located close to where they live and we are happy to arrange tours and an observation day in your preferred school prior to application.
How school placements work
School Direct trainees start at their chosen school during the first week of the autumn term. Term dates will be confirmed upon acceptance of an offer.
University sessions usually start on the Friday of that week and will be offered in several blocks at the start of each term. Trainees on the Enhanced route attend approximately 43 university days. As with all PGCE courses you will be expected to attend all of the specified university sessions. The course runs from September to June and trainees will spend 120 days in school over the course of the year.
We offer an ABA placement structure with Goldsmiths and you will spend 6 weeks in the spring term in a contrasting school. You will be allocated a Subject Mentor and Professional Co-ordinating Mentor in each school and both placements will be hosted in Catholic Schools.
Around half of the 38 schools within the Catholic Teaching Alliance offer training placements. Those who are able to support the main placement are listed for each respective course.
At the start of the training year we will contact all registered trainees to confirm where you are living and to ask about the type of school that you would like to be placed in for your second placement. Where possible, we will try to accommodate your request and placements are arranged with a maximum commuting distance of 1 hour 15 minutes based upon the address provided. Travel time is usually significantly less than this.
We are able to offer contrasting placements in single-sex or mixed schools and in schools with sixth forms where your main placement school is 11-16. Where you have completed a placement in a single-sex school your second placement will be in a mixed school or a school with students of the opposite sex.
Your tutor from Goldsmiths will visit you in school on a regular basis and liaise with your school mentor regarding your training and development. Your university tutor will carry out your final assessment in school against the national Teachers’ Standards.
Additional information can be obtained from C.Barclay the CTA Co-ordinator email@example.com
The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
EU and home students can apply to the Student Loans Company for a tuition fee loan.
Subject Specific Requirements
An undergraduate degree (eg BA, BSc etc) at 2.2 or above with honours.
- a first degree in English Literature or Language, English/Media Studies or Linguistics.
GCSE English and Maths
All applicants must possess a grade C/grade 4 in GCSE English and Maths. Other qualifications classified as equivalent by UK NARIC will also be accepted. Where applicants do not possess a grade C in both subjects they must take and pass an equivalency test prior to commencing the course.
We are looking for individuals who have the capacity to develop into outstanding teachers. This requires a combination of personal and academic skills.
You should demonstrate awareness of what good teaching entails and show a desire to teach.
There are three main attributes required for teaching:
1) Subject Knowledge - you need to show that you have a specialist understanding.
2) An ability to communicate with an audience. Your class will be your audience and the relationship and command of this group is crucial.
3) Good Interpersonal Skills - you need to demonstrate that you can work well with others.
Satisfactory occupational health check from your GP, plus the return of completed self-declaration of suitability form. Please refer to the Fitness to Train section of the Goldsmiths website for further information on the required checks.
Although not compulsory, at least one day of school observation is recommended prior to application, preferably with the same age group you’d like to work with i.e. primary or secondary
A pass in the professional skills tests for trainee teachers and providing original certificates of academic qualifications to the admissions office.
About the training provider
The Catholic Teaching Alliance (CTA) is a strong and growing alliance of 38 schools. It is a cross-phase partnership from primary, through to secondary and sixth form colleges. Our partner schools are based throughout South-East London and Kent covering Southwark, Lewisham, Bromley, Bexleyheath and Chatham. This diversity in type of school and location gives a richness to our shared work. Our shared vision is Growing Teachers, Growing Learners, Growing Schools.
Our schools have a long history of Initial Teacher Education and have offered School Direct places since the initiative began. We have selected several universities that match our ethos. By carefully selecting the right universities to work with we are able to offer you an excellent start to your career in education.
We offer both Primary Salaried and Tuition Fee School Direct places and are able to provide training in a range of secondary subjects. Some subjects are available with a choice of provider.
We run an extensive CPD programme for trainees and most secure an NQT position within the group of schools. We also provide flexibility as your career progresses, with opportunities to move between schools.
We would encourage applicants to contact us to arrange a school tour prior to application and we are happy to answer any questions that you may have. Please contact the CTA Co-ordinator, Clare Barclay for more information or visit our website here to find out more about our schools and the career opportunities that we are able to offer.
About the accredited body
Goldsmiths, University of London have been training teachers since 1904 and are renowned as a leader in the field of educational research and teacher training. Goldsmiths work in close collaboration with a range of partner schools across London, in both teacher training and research. Goldsmiths programmes have a strong emphasis on active learning, creativity, inclusion and languages and graduates benefit from excellent employment opportunities. They have internationally recognised professors in their Educational Studies Department, including Michael Rosen. Goldsmiths campus is set in vibrant New Cross, with excellent London Overground, National Rail and bus links into central London. Goldsmiths School Direct
Training with disabilities and other needs
All School Direct trainees must meet the Secretary of State's requirements for physical and mental health, but few health problems past or present preclude applicants from teaching.
The activities that a teacher must be able to perform are set out in the Education (Health Standards) (England) Regulations 2003.
We welcome applications from people with additional needs and disabilities. Successful applicants will be asked to complete a fitness questionnaire prior to commencing the programme.
Within our group of 38 schools, we are able to provide support for a range of disabilities and other needs and are usually able to arrange appropriate school placements and additional support as required. We have trained applicants with dyslexia, physical, hearing and visual impairments, as well as students with mental health issues. If you have any questions about health, disability, or the support provided or wish to discuss your own requirements further, please contact the CTA Co-ordinator, Clare Barclay, firstname.lastname@example.org.
For further information on the support provided by our university partners please see the links below.
King's College London
St Mary's University
Student Wellbeing Service
University College London
School Direct students are entitled to support from the UCL Student Support and Wellbeing (SSW) team. You can find more information here
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