About the course
This School Direct course, leading to QTS and a PGCE, specialises in teaching Foundation Stage and KS1 pupils. Training sessions take place in bespoke training rooms within schools. Sessions are dynamic and engaging. Each of the 30-35 trainees quickly become known as unique individuals so SCITT trainers and management can mould training and select placements to fit each individual’s needs, working exactly as skilled teachers do with their pupils. This is a key strength of our programme, making the training personalised so that trainees are challenged and supported at every step in becoming the best teacher they can be.
The SCITT trainers are all leading experts in their fields, charismatic and passionate about making a difference in children’s lives. They include excellent practitioners from partner schools and consultants who will ensure trainees will swiftly establish an understanding of early learning and developmental progression and how these are fundamental in teaching in the early years.
Central training includes days spent working with exceptional teachers and their pupils, in exceptional partnership schools, so all trainees are exposed to best practice in teaching creatively and effectively. We want future pupils to love learning and our future teachers to love teaching!
As well as training on placements, this programme offers 60 full days of central training, more than the majority of current ITT programmes. Good subject knowledge underpins effective teaching, and the quality and depth of our central training is a key reason why so many of our teachers have risen rapidly to senior management roles in schools. Headteachers, SCITT trained teachers and trainees are unanimous in stating that the course structure is the ideal blend of theory and practice.
Within the course, all trainees have regular opportunities to work alongside pupils in an outstanding special school and a number choose to opt for a final teaching placement in a special school as a result.
An integral part of the courses is a full University of Leicester PGCE, with Masters Level credits. Trainees complete the equivalent of two 5000 word assignments within this PGCE award, receiving additional training at the University and are recognised as students of the University. This includes access to the library, sports and learning support facilities. The PGCE award is recognised internationally and the SCITT has trained teachers who are now working in Australia, Hong Kong and China.
Click HERE for more information about the course design and timetables.
The SCITT and School Direct partner alliances, will use a two stage interview process for candidates called to interview, normally held on two separate days. It may be possible to hold both interviews on the same day for candidates who need to travel further or candidates who will find attending interview for two half days particularly difficult.
As part of our selection process all candidates will be asked to complete written audits in English and mathematics. The written audits assess whether each candidate’s personal subject knowledge in English and mathematics is sufficient to form a secure base to underpin high quality teaching of these subjects in the primary school. This means the audits serve a different purpose and are of a different design to the professional skills tests.
Audit Information and Preparation Advice
The interview process will also take place in our partner schools and will involve a combination of tasks including:
- a presentation, connected to current educational issues;
- a task working with a small group of early primary or primary pupils;
- a formal interview;
- a reading task.
Each part of the selection procedure will be graded to agreed criteria. The interview questions will be largely based on elements that will contribute to the Teachers’ Standards. Equal opportunities procedures will be followed to ensure that the selection procedures are open, fair and assessments are to agreed criteria.
How school placements work
The SCITT partnership knows trainees can only reach their potential if given exceptional support in placements. Teaching is about relationships; and the relationship between a trainee and their class teacher on placement is vitally important. The trust and loyalty of headteachers and teachers in our partner schools, built up over the last 14 years, is a key strength of our training. 7 of the Top 10 Primary Schools in Leicestershire (including the TOP 3) are part of the SCITT partnership, offering SCITT student placements and employing SCITT NQTs. The Real Schools Guide 2018
The consistently high quality of support on 3 different school placements, from dedicated and enthusiastic teachers, underpins our success, making us one of the very top teacher training providers in the country (The Good Teacher Training Guides). This maximises opportunities for each trainee to learn from best practice in different settings. Our trainees complete training confident across the EYFS and Key Stage 1 and are fully prepared to work in a wide variety of schools, ready to serve diverse pupil populations.
As a trainee on The Merton SD programme, you will a be part of the STEP Teaching School Alliance. At least one of your placements will therefore be in a STEP partnership school in the Syston and Thurmaston area of Leicestershire. Placements are carefully matched to trainee’s development needs and SCITT management also take into account issues such as childcare and public transport links, where relevant for individual trainees.
The autumn placement sees trainees experience both foundation stage and key stage 1 within the same school within an 8 week block. In spring and summer terms, you’ll have a further placement in each of EYFS and KS1. Placements always begin with a week-long introduction visit to get to know the children and school.
Ofsted (2016) reported that “Placement schools are very carefully allocated to provide trainees with teaching experiences across the whole 5-11 age range in a variety of settings. This is an outstanding feature of the training.”
The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
To apply for a place on the SCITT course, or accredited SCITT SD routes, all applicants must:
- hold (or expect to gain before the start of the course), a UK recognised degree (preferably 2:1 or above) or equivalent.
- already hold GCSE Grade C or above in English and mathematics and be able to gain at least a Grade C in science, or equivalent, before the interview processes are finished.
*demonstrate they can communicate accurately and effectively in spoken and written Standard English.
All degree subjects will be considered, including subjects not directly linked to a National Curriculum subject.
We are looking for talented, creative individuals, with a passion for teaching across a wide range of subjects within the primary curriculum. Good communication skills are at the heart of effective teaching and all applicants are expected to demonstrate excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
Teachers in schools know that teaching demands stamina and perseverance. We look for applicants with the resilience and determination required to cope with the demands of teaching.
We aim to recruit a range of good role models representative of the local population, particularly from minority ethnic communities and men. We also encourage LSAs and career changers.
A commitment to undertake teacher training is a major step. As such it is important applicants make this commitment based on a first hand understanding of the pressures and rewards of working in a British primary school in the twenty first century. Applicants are strongly encouraged to have a minimum of one week’s relevant and recent experience in a primary school. We feel this is advantageous to demonstrate your understanding of teaching and learning in your interview.
Applicants will need to pass health and DBS police checks and have the physical and mental fitness to teach.
About the training provider
The Merton Primary School is the lead school for the School Direct route at STEP Teaching School Alliance (TSA). Our programme is delivered by Leicester and Leicestershire SCITT (L&L SCITT) providing trainees with invaluable classroom experience enabling them to become effective and confident primary teachers.
STEP is an innovative alliance of primary and secondary schools working across Leicester, Leicestershire and surrounding areas. As a diverse partnership of schools in rural and urban settings we work collaboratively to improve outcomes for our children. We provide high quality, inspirational opportunities to develop and enthuse existing teachers and those new to teaching.
We work in close partnership with the L&L SCITT, an Outstanding ITT provider, in the design of this School Direct programme. STEP trainees on this route benefit from following the full SCITT training programme. All school placements are in SCITT partner schools with at least one being in a STEP school.
The L&L SCITT has been consistently rated by Ofsted as Outstanding since 2009. In the most recent `Good Teacher Training Guide’ the SCITT is in the top five ITT providers nationally, being the top primary provider in the East Midlands. Trainees gain an internationally recognised PGCE, worth Masters level credits, awarded by the University of Leicester, alongside QTS.
Many students that have completed the STEP School Direct programme go on to gain employment in one of our schools. They benefit from access to our high quality NQT and professional development programmes, providing continued support throughout their career.
Training with disabilities and other needs
Education and training providers have a duty under the Equality Act 2010 to anticipate the adjustments that disabled students may need. The SCITT is committed to actively promoting equal opportunities in employment and to encouraging participation by disabled people in public life.
If you would describe yourself as having a disability, in accordance with the Equality Act (2010), and need any adjustments made to promote equality of opportunity, please contact us, as soon as possible, so we can discuss your requirements. The best place for you to do this is on your UCAS form. However, you can also do it at any time during your studies, either by telling a member of SCITT Management.
As we are partnered with the University of Leicester, our students can access the Student Support Services offered. The AccessAbility Centre offers support and advice for students with dyslexia or other specific learning difficulties as well as working with students who have sensory disabilities, mobility difficulties; mental health conditions and autism. The Centre offers study skills support.
The AccessAbility Centre
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