About the course
This is a salaried primary general course (5 - 11 years), leading to QTS and a PGCE. It prepares applicants to teach the full range of national curriculum subjects across Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2.
The vast majority of training takes place in schools. Each trainee will be given at least two placements across the partnership, during which they work closely alongside experienced teacher tutors who demonstrate outstanding practice and can provide daily coaching and support. More information about the school placements can be found below.
In addition to the school-based training, trainees attend weekly core training sessions at a range of venues across the partnership. These generally take place on Fridays and provide a coherent programme, closely linked to the Teachers’ Standards and national curriculum as well as covering areas such as safeguarding, E-Safety and behaviour management.
These weekly sessions, along with post-session tasks, enable trainees to develop a deeper understanding of key issues and pedagogical thinking by encouraging them to critically reflect on research in relation to their own classroom practice. They also provide an opportunity for trainees to compare notes with peers working in other schools and share experiences within a supportive environment.
Trainees on this course also work towards a PGCE, currently offered by Oxford Brookes University (2018-19). Trainees attend approximately 9 workshops (usually in Buckingham) and on successful completion of three modules, gain a PGCE, carrying 60 Masters' credits.
Trainees are assessed against the Teachers' Standards and their progress towards these standards is reviewed at regular intervals throughout the course. A wide range of evidence is used when making judgements, such as observations, half termly reports, evidence bundles (collated by trainees on a half-termly basis), assignments and the trainees' own reflections and self evaluations.
The focus of all assessment activities is developmental - with the clear aim of helping trainees to further improve the quality of their teaching.
A final Assessment takes place in June and will consist of a paired observation, scrutiny of evidence against the Teachers' Standards, a formal interview and a final report from the teacher tutor.
A detailed and rigorous assessment procedure is in place, which is transparent, understood by all partners and consistently implemented. It has also been reviewed in line with the government's workload initiative, ensuring that the collection of evidence is both meaningful and manageable and has a positive impact on the progress of trainees.
It is our aim to recruit the highest quality applicants into the profession who have the capacity to become outstanding teachers.
For this reason, we carry out a rigorous three or four-stage selection process.
Stage 1: An application sift is carried out by course leaders to check for minimum academic requirements as well as strong references.
Stage 2: Applicants are invited to a selection day at Bourton Meadow Academy where they will take part in a range of activities including a presentation, group task, written task and a short teaching activity.
The interview panel comprises two course managers and sometimes a headteacher from the partnership.
Stage 3: Formal interview
This interview lasts approximately 20 minutes and consists of a series of questions which enable the applicant to share more information about their previous experience and to elaborate on the skills they bring to the profession.
If an applicant on the School Direct (salaried) programme is being considered for a partnership school with which they have no prior links, a further visit / interview is likely to be arranged. This usually takes place within the school and is conducted by the headteacher who will make the final decision, as successful candidates on this route are employed by their partnership school.
Following a successful interview, a conditional offer is made. This offer is conditional on the applicant obtaining any pending qualifications (including the literacy and numeracy professional skills tests), an Enhanced DBS check and a 'Fit to Teach' health assessment.
How school placements work
Generally, trainees will have two school placements during the course: a main placement and a second placement. They will work in these placement schools four days a week (Monday - Thursday), giving them approximately 140 days in school.
Main Placement: This is the school in which the trainee will spend most of their time throughout the year. By remaining with the same class for the majority of the year, trainees develop a secure understanding of pupils' progress over time, how this is tracked and used to inform future teaching.
Second Placement: This usually takes place in the first half of the spring term and gives trainees an opportunity to experience a contrasting setting and different key stage.
Enhancement Visits: These visits are built into our core training programme so that trainees are given regular opportunity to spend time in different schools and settings, enabling them to focus on specific areas such as behaviour management, Pupil Premium, Special Educational Needs (SEND) and transition from KS2 to KS3.
The aim of these placements and visits is to further enhance the training programme, equipping trainees with the knowledge, skills and understanding to teach in a wide range of contexts.
Bourton Meadow arranges all placements on behalf of trainees. When selecting schools, we consider a wide range of factors including geographical location, preferred key stage, type of school, previous experience, chosen course etc. However, we are also able to accommodate requests for a specific school (with the Headteacher's agreement) if an applicant already has a link with the school.
Trainee online surveys in January 2018 indicated that 100% of trainees agreed that their placements had been in contrasting schools and had been arranged in a timely manner.
A second placement familiarisation week in November, also provides trainees with an opportunity to spend time in their new school, prior to the placement commencing in January. This enables trainees to receive a thorough induction, form positive relationships with colleagues and pupils and familiarise themselves with planning, helping them to maximise their learning and progress during this short but vital phase of the training programme.
Salaried trainees will be paid on at least point 1 of the unqualified teachers' pay scale for the duration of their training.
Trainees on this School Direct (salaried) programme will be required to pay for the additional PGCE qualification (This was £1800 in 2018-19. The fee for 2019-20 is still under review but will be confirmed shortly.) The PGCE award is internationally-recognised and carries 60 credits towards a Masters.
Financial support isn’t available for this course because it comes with a salary.
If you choose a course without a salary, you may be eligible for financial support while you study, including bursaries, scholarships and loans.
- BA First degree or equivalent qualification
- GCSE grade C/4 or above in English language (or equivalent qualification)
- GCSE grade C/4 or above in mathematics (or equivalent qualification)
- GCSE grade C/4 or above in a science (or equivalent qualification)
- literacy and numeracy professional skills tests
If you studied outside of the UK, you should contact the National Academic Recognition Centre website (https://www.naric.org.uk/naric) to obtain written confirmation that your qualifications are of an equivalent level to the required UK GCSEs and undergraduate degree.
We aim to recruit individuals who can:
- demonstrate a passion for teaching and a genuine concern for children's welfare
- demonstrate good subject knowledge
- show resilience and perseverance
- be adaptable, creative and patient
- work under pressure
- proactively seek opportunities to enhance their training
- communicate clearly and accurately in Standard English
- form positive relationships with individuals from all walks of life
- support the values, attitudes and ethos of our partnership schools
- maintain high standard of professionalism
- reflect on their own practice and act upon advice
Salaried trainees are required to undergo a:
- Fit to Teach assessment
- Enhanced DBS check
- Prohibition Check
It is the responsibility of the employing school to meet these requirements.
The salaried route is a very competitive route into teacher training. Relevant work experience will often strengthen an application and the applicant's performance at a selection day. However, this work experience is NOT a requirement and applications will still be considered from candidates without such experience.
About the training provider
Bourton Meadow Initial Teacher Training Centre (BMITTC) is an established provider of teacher training - recognised by Ofsted as an outstanding provider (March 2014) and has been since its formation in 2000.
Bourton Meadow ITTC works within Bourton Meadow Education Trust (BMET) and operates from Bourton Meadow Academy: the Lead school in our growing partnership.
Based in Buckingham, the partnership is ideally placed for Milton Keynes, Aylesbury, Leighton Buzzard, Oxford, Brackley, Bicester, Towcester and Northampton and we currently have over 20 schools within the partnership.
A very unique and important aspect of our training programme, which was recognised by Ofsted in our most recent inspection, is the fortnightly visits from a training manager. These visits take place within school, enabling both the trainee and their teacher tutor to be well-supported and the training to be personalised to meet trainees' individual needs. The same training manager will respond quickly to any queries that arise in between visits, helping us to maintain the outstanding communication and support, for which we are renowned, as reflected in the stakeholder online surveys (January 2018).
Other benefits of training with Bourton Meadow include:
- opportunity to observe and be coached by outstanding teachers;
- large focus on practical experience and application of skills in the classroom;
- opportunity for university-led learning with Oxford Brookes University, leading to the award of a PGCE;
- a diverse range of high-quality placements;
- excellent employment opportunities and rapid career progression;
- continued support into your NQT year and beyond
About the accredited body
Bourton Meadow ITTC is an established, outstanding provider of initial teacher training. It accredits School Direct courses for two lead school partnerships: Bourton Meadow Academy (Primary General: 5 - 11 years) and Bedgrove Infant School (Primary General: 3 - 7 years). All trainees, regardless of the route, benefit from the same high-quality training and support, including the fortnightly visits from a training manager.
Bourton Meadow ITTC has a wealth of experience across the sector and is also registered to provide the AO route to QTS as well as post-graduate teaching apprenticeships.
Training with disabilities and other needs
We strongly encourage skilled and talented applicants from a variety of backgrounds, including those with a disability.
We therefore endeavour to cater for trainees' individual needs, through the application and selection process, as well as the duration of the training programme by working in collaboration with our schools to make reasonable adjustments, as recommended by occupational therapy.
Placements are carefully chosen to ensure that the specific needs of an individual can be met within the setting and this includes accessibility for trainees with a physical disability.
The fortnightly visits by a training manager from the lead school enable us to keep in close contact with trainees and to personalise the training and support they receive.
In the past, trainees with dyslexia have benefitted from additional visits and meetings to support them with the completion and organisation of course-related paperwork as well as their time management. Bourton Meadow has also helped to signpost trainees to various organisations who can provide more specialist advice.
As a result of these factors, data analysis from 2017-18 demonstrated that there were no differences in the outcomes of trainees with a known disability compared to those with no disability.
If you have a disability or other need you'd like to discuss before applying to our training programme, please contact us so we can discuss your specific requirements in more detail and answer any questions that you may have.
Apply on the UCAS website. You’ll need to register with UCAS before you can apply.
Visit Get into Teaching for guidance on applying for teacher training.
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Bourton Meadow Academy, Burleigh Piece, Buckingham MK18 7HX
Support and advice
For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.
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