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Can i get back into teaching?

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by sharondurow, Jun 2, 2018.

  1. sharondurow

    sharondurow New commenter

    Nearly twenty years ago I was completing a four year Primary BEd degree - unfortunately things didn't go to plan on my final placement and I left with just a pass degree in education and no QTS. I was obviously devastated at the time (I'd been heading for a 2:1 and I'd had good reports on my placements up to that point) I took some time out after my degree and worked as a TA for a couple of years with the hope of returning but then found that most universities wouldn't touch me as I'd failed QTS.

    Fast forward to last month and I found out I was being made redundant (I've been a clinical data manager for a clinical research organisation for the last 14 years - very different but I've enjoyed it!) and after much soul searching I've come to the conclusion that the only career I ever really wanted to do was teaching.

    My question is, is this something I can actually do? Are there routes back into teaching that I could take after all this time and would anywhere realistically take me on? Any ideas where I might be able to get some independent advice?

  2. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Schools have changed in various ways since you were a TA and most would admit 14 years is a long time to be out of education and the culture in a school to you might be unrecognisable now. The National Curriculum has changed and so have many other things - behaviour in some schools can be very challenging and the workload and large class sizes are an issue as well. Teachers routinely work 60+ hours per week and some do more. It can be a gruelling and exhausting schedule. For advice call the contact at the organisation listed:


    They will be able to talk you through your options regarding what you would have to do to and will know all the various routes which are many.

    In the meantime, is there anywhere you could get some experience working in a school even if on a volunteer basis. That way you would be able to observe what goes on in the classroom and speak to teachers on the job regarding pros and cons.

    You won't know until you enquire with the agency above, but it is worth looking into.

    All the very best and let us know what you find out.
    sharondurow and blueskydreaming like this.
  3. catbefriender

    catbefriender Lead commenter

    As Pepper says, go on the website. Also check with your local TSA (Teaching School alliance). The trick is put your LEA and then TSA, for instance Googling Croydon TSA, Hillingdon TSA etc. If you can call them up, sometime they have a database of returners and inform you of upcoming events.

    I have seen more returner events via the LEA TSAs for primary teachers than for secondary, and if one is operating next year, it would be a good idea to join. Sometimes its training, sometimes it a recruitment event for NQTs, returners, job hunters etc.

    Also think about doing a free TSST (Teacher Subject Specialism Training) course. They are for secondary teaching i.e. KS3-5, but doing a KS3 in Maths, Science or MFL TSST course would mean that you could sell yourself as that specialist in the primary school.

    It is highly competitive and there are loads of teachers out there vying for the same roles, so you'll have to keep sending application and not getting disheartened by a lack of response.

    Good luck and I hope you are one of the luckiest returners to teaching.:)
    pepper5 and sharondurow like this.
  4. sharondurow

    sharondurow New commenter

    Well it's not looking positive so far - to get onto any sort of training course to get qts I need a minimum 2.2 degree; I just don't meet minimum requirements so will fail at the first hurdle.

    Thinking I might try and get to an open day or two and talk to the people who actually do the courses and see if that helps.

    I definitely need to get some more recent school experiences too.

    I'm also unsure whether further study would be useful to my application or if it won't make a difference in the long run as my pass is still there and seems to be the only thing that matters.

    It's early days and I'll keep trying but so annoyed with myself now for not pushing harder all those years ago - no one told me back then that not retaking my placement would effectively bar me from ever teaching again
  5. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    You haven't been 'effectively barred from ever teaching again'! If you fail your driving test it doesn't mean you are never allowed on the roads again; it means you need to retake the test.

    Look into doing a primary top-up degree with QTS. It's a 1 year course. There are some out there, Google it.

    OR you could always complete a brand new degree (I have 2 BA degrees, it's not that weird), such as with the Open Uni, then complete a PGCE. Yes, it will take time.

    You should also try to spend some time in schools, as a volunteer or TA/HLTA, to see what changes have happened in 20 years, and be sure this is the right thing for you.
    pepper5 likes this.
  6. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Don't give up yet.

    Do some more research and speak to more people. As BSK says, get some recent experience in schools which is the most important point so you can see what itnis like.
    blueskydreaming likes this.
  7. sharondurow

    sharondurow New commenter

    You're right - a couple of negative responses and it dredged up a lot of emotion i didn't realise wa still there. I'm going to update my school experience as my first port of call then look at refreshing my academic qualifications if I can.

    Thanks for the suggestions too - it helps to put some perspective on things
    blueskydreaming and pepper5 like this.
  8. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    Good luck - I'm sure there's a way of making it happen!
    MarieAnn18 likes this.
  9. eaatoutou

    eaatoutou New commenter

    Hi Sh
    Hi Sharondurow, as you have a degree in education why don't you try the QTLS route? With a one year course BTEC diploma level 5 in education and training you can gain a qualification that can allow you to get back to teaching. This is exactly what i am currently doing at SCCD(school courses career development). So, i would advice you to contact them and start a DET course that will help you to have your teaching qualification.

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