About the course
The Lower Primary (X124) Course is designed for candidates who want to specialise in teaching children in the 3 to 7 age range (Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1). It is extremely similar to the Gneral Primary Course in terms of general content and time spent in school, but the age ranges taught on placement are different.
The training comprises taught modules related to Professional Theory and Practice, The Curriculum and Personalising Learning. People who undertake this course will learn about a wide range of facets of Early Years and Primary practice including planning, assessment and pupil progress, behaviour management, working with other professionals and parents and how to effectively teach the Early Years and Primary curriculum.
Over the course of the whole year, there are four assignments to write and each one is designed to embed understanding of core elements and to support trainees in linking educational research to the most current practice. Assignment submission dates are always timed during periods when trainees are not undertaking school placements, allowing ample time to focus on different elements of training and tutors are always on hand to provide feedback and support.
Trainees undertake two nine-week school placements in two different partnership schools - one in a foundation stage class and one in a key stage 1 class. They will receive the daily support of their school-based mentor whilst on placement, who is the teacher of the class in which they are based. Practical assessment is ongoing with weekly lesson observations leading to an end of placement report. Trainees will also collect a portfolio of evidence demonstrating how they meet the National 'Teachers' Standards'.
The majority of the central training is based at the South Coast SCITT site - a purpose built 'learning centre' based in the grounds of Bransgore Primary School, near Christchurch. Occasionally, training is also based in schools or other premises in the Hampshire and Dorset areas. Similarly, our placement schools are based predominantly across Dorset and Hampshire.
The course has an excellent reputation locally and about a third to a half of each cohort of trainees go on to gain employment in the local area, often in a school in which they were placed during training. South Coast SCITT is noted in the 2017 'Good Teacher Training Guide' as being one of just nine Primary Providers nationally from which 100% of trainees successfully enter the teaching profession.
Successful applicants are invited to attend a one-day Selection Process. Dates for Selection Days are arranged on an ongoing basis throughout the academic year and full details of what to expect and how to prepare are sent in advance to each applicant so that they know exactly what to expect from the day.
Assessments undertaken on the day are likely to include a brief teaching activity and some other practical and/or written tasks. Formal interviews of about 45 minutes are undertaken with the SCITT Director and one of the Head teachers from the partnership of schools.
All Selection Day assessments are designed to help interviewers gain a realistic understanding of each candidate's current level of capability across different disciplines so that these can (a) confirm suitability to begin training and (b) be used formatively as a needs analysis exercise for future development.
South Coast SCITT prides itself on very clear lines of communication. On completion of the assessments, candidates receive prompt feedback as to whether or not they have passed the selection process.
How school placements work
South Coast SCITT works with a partnership of 30 to 35 schools based across Hampshire and Dorset. Placements are offered by partner schools annually which are then selected and matched to each trainee by the SCITT Director. The Director seeks the most beneficial and bespoke match between each trainee and their placement school. Decisions of where to place trainees are based on a number of factors including proximity to the trainee's home, what kinds of support or challenge they may require from their mentor, their personal characteristics and their prior background and experience. The two placements undertaken are chosen to be as contrasting as possible and to offer a range of different experiences to each trainee so that they are well prepared for the teaching profession.
In addition to the seven-week initial training period during which all trainees are based in Bransgore Primary School, trainees undertake two nine-week placements in two different partnership schools. They may or may not be at a school where other trainees are on placement for this period.
Trainees undertaking the General Primary Training Specialism will have one placement in a Key Stage 1 class and one placement in a Key Stage 2 class. Those undertaking the Lower Primary Specialism will have one placement in a Foundation Stage class and one placement in a Key Stage 1 class. Despite this 'specialism', on completion of the course, all trainees are free to apply for teaching posts in any year group and most employers seek Newly Qualified Teachers who are willing to be flexible and teach in any year group across the Primary age range.
The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
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
Student loans are available which you are not required to pay back until you are earning above the repayment threshold amount. From April 2018, this amount is £25,000.
For applicants who reside outside a 20-mile radius of the Bransgore Learning Centre, a travel bursary may be available.
All entrants require a grade C or above (or 4 or above under the revised system) in GCSE examinations in English, Mathematics, and Science.
All entrants must also hold a first degree from a United Kingdom higher education institution or equivalent qualification. A first degree comprises 300 HE credit points of which 60 must be at level 6 of the QCF. Applicants with a foundation degree will need to supplement this qualification with at least 60 credits at level 6 (HE level 3) in order to attain an equivalent single qualification.
Each teacher is different and there is not necessarily a set of fixed attributes which mean one person will be a more effective teacher than another. However, people who are most successful on the SCITT course tend to be well organised, committed to teaching as a long-term career, reflective, resilient and willing to learn and adapt. Strong interpersonal and communication skills are essential.
All entrants must successfully pass the professional skills tests in English and Mathematics before the start of the course and will be subject to a health and DBS criminal records check.
About the training provider
South Coast SCITT was rated Outstanding in all areas by Ofsted in 2017. The overall quality of the training was rated as Outstanding by 100% of course participants for the last five years. At the end of our one year course, trainees achieve Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE), validated by the University of Winchester.
Trainees can expect:
• A well led and managed course with central training led by experts in primary practice
• Seminars rooted in reliable research and including practical, current hands-on approaches
• Integration of theory and practice in order to embed understanding efficiently and effectively
• A friendly and professional working environment in which mutual support, reflective practice and high expectations are the cultural norm
• A highly personalised approach with excellent pastoral support
• Individualised support in how to gain a teaching post and excellent employment rates – usually 100% each year
Our training model includes two nine-week teaching placements and a short placement in a special school setting. In addition, trainees undertake a very unique seven-week placement in the lead school, Bransgore Primary School, at the beginning of the course. This is an exciting opportunity to learn from teachers and observe classes in all age ranges from year R to year 6. Trainees take part in and lead a range of curriculum activities in order to practise their emerging teaching skills in a safe, non-assessed environment before undertaking formal school placements.
Training with disabilities and other needs
Applications are welcomed from all candidates irrespective of race, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, disability or religious beliefs.
We have worked with many trainees who have dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia or other impairments or conditions and treat each person as an individual with their own strengths and areas for development.
Applicants are encouraged to disclose any specific needs they may have at the application stage so that specific arrangements can be made, for example additional time to undertake assessments, additional study skills support or physical arrangements.
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Support and advice
For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.
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