About the course
As a School Direct trainee with Durham University’s PGCE Course, you will follow their comprehensive academic programme which will provide you with an excellent range of teaching and learning strategies and a broad curriculum knowledge. Both Core and Foundation subjects are studied in depth and you are given the opportunity to put this learning into practice both with the university and on school placement.
The academic programme is coupled with extensive time in school. You will spend every Thursday in a placement school and Fridays are spent either in your placement school, or on an enhancement focus day. During enhancement focus days, you will learn about English as an Additional Language (EAL), Early Years or Special Educational Needs (SEN), for example.
In addition to your weekly days in school, you will complete block placements throughout the year. Your first, or preliminary, placement will be in two blocks: one of four weeks and a second of three weeks. These will take place before and after Christmas. Your main teaching placement will begin around Easter, in an alternate school, and will last for ten weeks.
All of our Partner schools are experienced in hosting trainees and will be able to support your needs. Class mentors are trained and monitored by us so that we can be sure of their ability to train and coach you. These close relationships also help us to keep up-to-date of your needs, performance and progress across the year.
You will be expected to submit assignments relating to your learning throughout the year. There are also three submissions to write at Masters level. These submissions are assessed by University tutors. The University Progress board will also make the final recommendation for QTS at the end of the course.
If your application is successful, we will invite you to attend a Selection day. This will be held in one of our three lead Cluster schools. You will be interviewed by the Teaching School’s lead Head Teacher, a second Head Teacher in charge of Teacher Training, and a representative from Durham University.
As part of the selection process, you will be asked to read a story to a group of children. The class teacher will observe this and feedback to the interview panel. You will also be asked to do a five minute presentation in advance of a formal question session.
Our selection process is tailored to the needs of the Teaching School, but is very similar to that of Durham University, meaning that all trainees accepted to the course have had a comparable experience.
How school placements work
Your school placements will take place in two of our Partnership schools. Our Teaching School Alliance consists of over 50 primary aged schools and up to a dozen of these are host placement schools. Our placement schools range from fewer than 60 pupils, to over 400. We have rural schools and town-centre schools. As trainees, we try to make sure that you have experience of very different school settings.
You will have placements in two schools. One will be in a Key Stage 1 class and the other will be in Key Stage 2. We will always try to place you based on your preferences, although this may also depend on your prior experience and how you need to be supported.
Our lead school is within ten miles of Durham City, and our Partner schools are within a five-mile radius of this. We make every effort to support travel arrangements and we consider this when making placement decisions.
The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
You will need to have GCSEs, or equivalent, in maths, English and Science, at grade C or above.
You will also need to have at least a 2.1 degree in a suitable subject. In exceptional circumstances, we will consider applicants with a 2.2.
In our trainees, we are looking for self-motivated, enthusiastic individuals who are resilient and show perseverance and determination.
Trainees working with us must demonstrate the drive to make a positive impact on the children in our schools. This includes being articulate and professionally presented. Prior experience with children is desirable
In line with Durham University’s safeguarding guidelines, you will be expected to complete a ‘fit to teach’ assessment and you will require a clear, enhanced DBS certificate.
About the training provider
As a trainee through our Teaching School, you will train alongside other trainees on Durham University’s PGCE Course. Durham University is a world ‘top 100’ University and ranked No. 1 Education Department in the UK by the Complete University Guide 2018.
We are an experienced training provider with access to a wide ranging group of Partnership schools. Our schools work with us at every step to ensure the best opportunities and support are available to you.
By the end of summer 2018, 80% of trainees completing their year with us held a teaching post in our Partnership schools. 100% of our School Direct trainees successfully found a job.
Training with disabilities and other needs
As a training provider with Durham University, we adhere to their guidelines regarding the support provided.
Our extensive range of school partners vary greatly in terms of building type, location, size etc. As such, we are normally able to provide a placement which is appropriate to your needs.
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:
Training programme code:
Choose a training location
You’ll also need to choose a training location – select the relevant location name on the application form.
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Advice and support
For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.
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