Primary with Waverley School Direct Accredited provider: Newman University

Course offered
PGCE with QTS full time
Financial support
Student finance if you’re eligible

A postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) with qualified teacher status (QTS) allows you to teach in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It’s also recognised internationally.

Many PGCE courses include credits that count toward a Master’s degree.

Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
9 October 2018
Date course starts
September 2019

About the course

The Primary PGCE (FS/KS1) is a 3-7 programme designed to develop your skills and confidence as a teacher in this age range. It includes specialist study of the early years foundation stage curriculum and the distinctive pedagogies encountered in reception/nursery classrooms and children's centres, as well as the national curriculum for Key Stage 1. Trainees are encouraged to develop into reflective teachers who can respond effectively to the learning needs of children of all abilities and needs.

Our PGCE course maximises your experience in classrooms, but also takes advantage of the depth and breadth of experience of university tutors, underpinned by educational theory. We start with a 4 day induction at Waverley School and your own host school in July; you then rejoin your host school at the start of September.

You will benefit from the full university PGCE provision, plus an additional school-led programme delivered jointly by practising primary and secondary teachers. You will receive approximately 40 days' training at Newman University, focused on pedagogy, professional studies and support with academic writing. In addition to the daily support and guidance from your host school, you will attend approximately 12 twilight training sessions at Waverley School.

You spend the first week of September in your host school before starting a five week training block at Newman University - you return to your school one day a week during the block to give you a practical context for this learning. You then join your school full-time until Christmas for your first assessed placement, the first two weeks of which are planning and preparation. During a similar training block in January, you start to spend time in a different school, which will be your second assessed placement until Easter. You then return to your main school and class until the end of the summer term.

You are assessed against the Teacher Standards through regular lesson observation with supportive feedback and ongoing self-reflection on your progress. You also complete two Master’s Level assignments of 4000 words each, plus subject audits in English, Maths and Science. After your assessment for QTS and PGCE is completed at the end of June, you will be supported until the end of term to extend your experience through your choice of focus, aimed at enhancing your early career prospects and enabling you to be the best teacher you can be.

Interview process

We review all applications to assess eligibility and potential suitability for the programme to which a candidate is applying. We recruit and fill places from when UCAS opens in October, so do not delay in submitting your application. We close courses as they are filled; and at the latest by 30 June 2019.

We work with our university partners to co-ordinate the recruitment process and hold interviews on a regular basis. You will be asked to attend one interview day, usually at Waverley School. A senior Waverley School Direct colleague and a university representative will usually form the interview panel. Sometimes partner schools are also represented.

The interview consists of an observed teaching activity, involving a small group of children, where we gauge your ability to interact with the young people you wish to teach. You will be given information about this in advance. There is also a set of formal interview questions where we evaluate your experience of working with children to date, your subject knowledge, and your commitment to, and understanding of, the role of a trainee and teacher.

We will ask you to complete diagnostic literacy and numeracy exercises, the purpose of which is to gauge what additional support, if any, might be needed, especially in completion of PGCE elements.

How school placements work

We actively recruit for the trainees we want and need for our core partnership of primary schools in the centre and east of Birmingham, all of which are within a five mile radius of Waverley School. We all share the common goal of making a real difference through the power of education to the areas of socio-economic disadvantage within which we are located.

We also work with a wider network of schools to offer both main and second placements, numbering about ten schools over the last three years. Sometimes a new school approaches us as they already know a potential applicant; and sometimes an applicant introduces a potential new host school to us. We are always happy to consider new partners. Some trainees travel long distances from outside the area to come and work with us so we really value this wider network of partners.

You will work with a Reception class in your main host school, whereas on your second placement you will teach in KS1. You will additionally have opportunities to spend time in nursery classes or schools, the extent of which depends on your prior experience.

We take many factors into account when selecting main and second placements for our trainees, with home location being a key consideration. We also invite successful applicants to express a preference should they wish following interview and we will take reasons given into account when making decisions.

Our course is designed so that you benefit from the best that Newman University and 'on-the-job' learning can offer. You can expect to spend about 155 days in classrooms working with children, about 45 days of which will be in your second school.


The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,250
EU students £9,250

Financial support

You may be eligible for a loan while you study.

Financial support if you’re from outside the UK.



  • An honours degree from a UK Higher Education Institution, or equivalent qualification. We consider applicants on a case by case basis.
  • GCSE in English language, Maths and a Science at grade C/4 or above, or equivalent qualifications.

You must meet these academic requirements by the start of the course, not necessarily before application.

Personal qualities

You need a passion for teaching and developing young children. You will want to make a difference in some of the most socio-economically deprived areas of Birmingham. You will have excellent communication skills and be reflective, able to respond positively to feedback and learn from your mistakes. We are looking for resilience, trainees who can both work hard and keep trying when things do not go to plan. We need team players, willing to support others – and to be supported. You need to be organised and highly professional at all times. And you need to enjoy learning yourself!

Other requirements

The requirements below need to be met by successful applicants following acceptance of our offer:

  • Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) clearance.
  • Fitness to Teach process.
  • Literacy and Numeracy Skills Tests.

Contact details

Waverley School
Yardley Green Road
Bordesley Green


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.

When you apply you’ll need these codes for the Choices section of your application form:

  • Training provider code: 1RH
  • Training programme code: 37B8

Choose a training location

You’ll also need to choose a training location and give the relevant training location code.

Code Name Address
- Main Site Yardley Green Road, Bordesley Green, Birmingham B9 5QA

Advice and support

For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.

For advice about teaching

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