About the course
The Primary Catholic Partnership has provided teacher training for twenty years. It has a strong reputation for high quality training that enables trainees to enter the professional confidently, feeling thoroughly prepared and ready to enjoy a successful teaching career.
The PCP PGCE is a full-time 39 week programme with 26 weeks spent in school. It offers the best of both worlds - a school-led experience which builds a strong base of practitioner skills and an academic award which informs your practice by an in-depth understanding of how children learn. This means you will be able to deploy teaching strategies confidently and make informed decisions about why and where particular approaches are suitable. By taking the PGCE, you will become a knowledgeable reflective practitioner. Schools value this highly and the academic qualification could be particularly important if you are thinking about teaching overseas in the future.
Our PGCE will give you a rich understanding of primary practice and a network of contacts in local schools. During the year, you will have the opportunity to visit up to eight schools, where you will be provided with expertise by highly effective leaders in education. You will undertake two long placements, one in each key stage, and have plenty of time to develop your skills before you take responsibility and your teaching is assessed. Visits to your first placement school start early in the programme, allowing you to familiarise yourself with your class and the demands of teaching and gradually increase your responsibility through the autumn term. Instead of being thrown in at the deep end, you will gradually increase your responsibility through the autumn term and receive extensive support from a trained mentor and your class teacher.
When you are not on placement, you will be able to observe models of good practice in other schools and attend sessions at the training centre taught by specialist teachers, skilled in current educational approaches. This will provide you with up to date expertise and build your confidence in the core areas of class management, subject knowledge, planning and assessing pupil progress.
Taught sessions run from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with a break for lunch. If you would like to visit our training centre and sample what we can offer you, do contact us by phone or email. More information about the course can be found on our website: www.pcp-scitt.org.uk
Selection normally takes place at the PCP training centre on a single day. You will usually attend with other applicants.
The day will begin with an introduction from the PCP. You will be given the chance to ask questions about initial teacher training, the PGCE and other programmes offered by the partnership. Our aim will be to help you confirm that you are choosing the most suitable route. During the selection day, you will be asked to give a five minute presentation and be observed undertaking a short teaching task in a partnership school. After this, you will take part in a personal interview with two members of the Partnership Board, one of whom is normally a head teacher. You will have the opportunity ask individual questions and highlight any specific needs you may have.
Your qualifications will be checked during the day and there will be formative assessment tasks in English and Mathematics. These will enable us to assess your level of subject knowledge for primary teaching and begin your personal development plan. If you are accepted on to the PCP PGCE, we may offer you the opportunity to attend a free subject booster course run by one of our specialist tutors before you begin the programme.
After selection day, the PCP will be happy to provide feedback on your performance in specific areas of our tests. You may find the feedback helpful if you have yet to pass the national Professional Skills Tests.
How school placements work
PCP trainees undertake around 130 days in school during the year. This means you will be in school for two thirds of the programme. As well as your two main placements, you will visit at least six other schools. The experience of training in so many different types will prepare you to work in a wide range of schools and give you a network of valuable contacts. It will also give you the chance to have a look at schools to which you may be keen to apply.
You will have two block placements in carefully-selected partnership schools, one in each key stage. Both will be assessed. We will do our best to place you in schools within a reasonable travelling distance of where you choose to live. The first placement will be six weeks long; the second will be nine.
Before you begin each block placement, you will spend a number of weeks getting to know your placement school. This will help you embed yourself into the class, establish routines and try out your teaching before you take responsibility for the class. In total, you will spend twenty-two weeks in your two placement schools, which gives you plenty of time to grow into the teaching role at your own pace.
In addition to this, you will spend two weeks visiting at least six other schools to gain experience of good practice in phonics, maths mastery, science, cultural diversity, English as an Additional Language, PE and collective worship. Some of these visits may involve travel, usually in shared cars. If your journey to schools is further than your travel to the training centre, the PCP will contribute towards your travel expenses.
Most PCP trainees secure a teaching post before the end of the programme. We will do our best to help you become one of them. If you are, you will have the opportunity to undertake a supported bridging week in the school to which you have been appointed. This will help you feel well-prepared to hit the ground running when you take up your first teaching post in September.
The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
The quality and amount of training included in the PCP PGCE represents extremely good value for money. The initial tuition fee of £9,000 covers all course provision and qualifications. There will be no additional fees, unless a re-sit placement is required, which is rare.
For successful candidates, the PCP tuition fee covers Qualified Teacher Status, the PGCE, two modules of a Masters in Education (60 credits at M-level) and two modules of the Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS).
In addition to this, you may be eligible for our free pre-entry maths booster course and discounted fees for further modules of the CCRS after you complete your PGCE year.
If costs are an issue and you already have significant experience in schools, you may wish to explore the small number of salaried (non-PGCE) places we offer. We have a few available for the School Direct Salaried and Postgraduate Teaching Apprenticeship routes. Please visit the PCP website for further details.
You may be eligible for a loan while you study.
Financial support if you’re from outside the UK.
Financial support from the training provider
The PCP will contribute towards your travel expenses if your journey to schools is further than your travel to the training centre in Southampton.
During the taught course at the PCP training centre, parking is free and we offer complimentary tea and coffee throughout the year.
If you are eligible, we may also be able to offer a small amount of additional support for proven cases of hardship. As we are a small, school-centred organisation, this funding is inevitably limited and is normally accessed through an application process.
As a trainee/student in full-time education, you may qualify for a reduction in your council tax. Additional discounts are available if you purchase a TOTUM/NUS Extra card. If you join the PCP programme, we will be happy to provide advice about how to apply and will be able to verify that you have gained a place on the programme.
Entrants must hold a degree from a United Kingdom higher education institution or recognised equivalent. Second class Honours is normally the minimum. One of our strengths is that we encourage applications from a range of academic subject backgrounds.
Applicants with degrees from overseas should contact NARIC (National Academic Recognition Information Centre) on 0870 990 4088 to obtain written confirmation of equivalence.
All entrants must have attained a minimum of Grade 4 or C in GCSE (or equivalent) in English, Mathematics and Science. If you have not passed one of these subjects, we can arrange an equivalency test.
The PGCE is an exciting, intense year and there is a lot to learn. We expect you to be enthusiastic, hard-working and keen to challenge yourself to become the best you can.
Applicants have varied backgrounds. Experience outside England is valued but, if you have experience of the National Curriculum for England, you will get more out of the programme.
You do not need to be a Catholic. We welcome applicants from other faiths and beliefs. As you will be placed in Catholic schools, you should have empathy for faith schools and will need to feel comfortable teaching there.
You must be able to communicate clearly and accurately in spoken and written standard English.
All entrants go through Safeguarding and Occupational Health checks to ascertain that they are suitable to teach and work with children. You will also sign a declaration that you have not previously been excluded from teaching or working with children.
As the PGCE is an intense and exciting year with lots to learn, gaining school experience before the course will help you test your vocation and understand the current demands of teaching in a primary school in England.
About the training provider
The Primary Catholic Partnership SCITT has been a highly successful training provider for twenty years and been graded outstanding by Ofsted since 2005. At the last inspection, Ofsted commended, ‘the excellent quality of both the central and school-based training which provides an exceptionally effective balance of academic and practical experiences.’
The PCP has a strong local reputation. Our trainees are in demand and have a strong record of securing teaching posts because we were set up by schools to train the quality teachers they need. In the last three years, over 96% of our trainees have secured a post, many at first or second interview because we spend a lot of time helping prepare you for selection and your NQT year.
Partnership schools are located across Hampshire, Wiltshire and Dorset, so you have plenty of choice. As you will be in school for two thirds of the year, we will aim to place you near where you live. If you are moving here, Southampton, Bournemouth, Portsmouth, Winchester and Salisbury offer plenty of student accommodation.
The PCP centre is located at the northern edge of Southampton, so you don’t have to travel into the city for the taught course. It was built in 2013 and offers a delightful training environment, with two teaching rooms, a primary library and a social area with catering facilities.
Our extensive individual support will prepare you to teach confidently in any school and give you additional understanding if you want to teach successfully in faith schools.
Training with disabilities and other needs
The PCP encourages applicants with a disability and has a history of supporting trainees with learning difficulties and emotional challenges. As a long-standing provider, we are committed to helping you through the excitement and challenges of the training year.
Our exceptional pastoral provision allows us to track your progress as an individual and provide support where needed. Our school mentors are chosen for their expertise and sensitivity and rapid communication with them means we are able to intervene quickly if there are concerns. The taught programme contains sessions on well-being and SEND, and we are able to call on the services of a trained counsellor. This strong support network has enabled trainees with challenges to complete successfully over the years.
The PCP training centre is accessible, with free disabled parking and level access for wheelchair users. It has a range of facilities and the PCP is always keen to discuss enhancements that can reasonably be made.
The centre is located at the northern edge of Southampton, which means you won't have to travel into the city. It was purpose-built in 2013 and offers a well-equipped training environment. It occupies its own area in the grounds of a primary school. This means you will be based in your own dedicated training centre and still be able to experience the benefits of being on a school site.
If you have the aptitude for teaching, we will do our best to help you address the challenges you may have and realise your potential.
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.
Corpus Christi Catholic Primary School
St James Square, Boscombe, Bournemouth, Dorset BH5 2BX
Southampton SO15 2HX
St Bede's Catholic Primary School
Popley Way, Basingstoke, Hampshire RG24 9DX
St Joseph's Catholic Academy School
Bridge Road, Aldershot, Hampshire GU11 3DD
St Thomas More Catholic Primary School
Hants PO6 4JD
St. Paul's Catholic Primary School
City Road, Reading, Berkshire RG31 4SZ
Support and advice
For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.
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