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Career changer

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by Qashquai, Nov 5, 2015.

  1. Qashquai

    Qashquai New commenter

    Dear All,

    I've been with my current employer for just short of 30 years and have been studying with the Open University for the last 5/6. I am working toward a BA (Hons) to enable me to follow my goal of becoming a Primary Teacher, entering the training programme in Sep 16.

    I have over 20 years of leadership/management/instructional/coaching and mentoring experience through my work and with my local Air Training Corps Squadron.

    I'm First Aid at Work trained and am planning to do a Paediatric First Aid. I'm a governor at my local primary so have got classroom time experience. My employer has a generous resettlement package so I'm looking to do some more courses to help me stand out from the crowd.

    In your "collective" opinion which one(s) do you believe would benefit me more:

    Forest Schools Leader
    First Aid at Work Instructor

    Thanks in advance
  2. Gsr25

    Gsr25 Occasional commenter

    Hello Quashquai,

    Welcome to the Forum and to the Jobseekers board.
    I must say I really didn't expect to read at the bottom should you become a Forest School Leader or a First Aid Instructor!
    You say you will be entering ITT next September (I assume this is a PGCE route?) I personally would suggest you carry on with voluntary work within a primary school as this will help you no end, working with different key stages will help you to realise which age group you prefer working with and will give you the confidence when you undertake ITT.
    As for Forest School Leader training, well the L3 course is very involved. It's equal to an A level and is quite in depth as you study pedagogy (as you would in a PGCE) you gather a portfolio of evidence and you have 10 days of practical training (5 of these are assessment) you also need to plan and carry out 6 sessions as part of the assessment process. Courses generally run from Spring to Autumn or Autumn to Spring. you can do fast track ones but you will find most companies only run them once or twice a year, additionally you will need to do the 16 hour outdoor first aid course which is one of the most comprehensive first aid courses you can do (you can do this course separately)
    You could of course look into doing a Level 1 or Level 2 course but in order to deliver "official" Forest School you need the Level 3, but if it's a case of wanting to extend your knowledge of outdoor learning and more specifically Forest School then certainly look into Level 1 to see if you want to progress further.

    I don't know much about the First Aid training but I would imagine you would need to speak to St Johns who run the majority of them (I did my paediatric first aid through them and I felt very confident in my abilities following the course)
    The first aid at work courses aren't as comprehensive as the paediatric first aid and the outdoor first aid courses are so I think these are really well worth having (the outdoor one doesn't cover you for children under 3 as far as I know) but then I would imagine you would have to train to train people if that makes sense.

    I hope that has helped a bit!

    I wish you every success for the future, you sound like you have a great skills set to offer and you seem very enthusiastic and keen to learn more and more which is always great in this area of work.
    Good luck!
  3. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Hullo there @Qashquai and welcome to the Jobseekers Forum. I am the Forum Host, a specialist in helping people get the right job for them.

    Now when you say

    Do you mean which would make you more employable? You are thinking of qualifications that you can do before beginning your ITT next autumn, that would make you more attractive to a school?

    But before we get to that question from you, here's one from me.

    Have you already applied for an ITT place? Apply 2 opens for 2016 entry in just a few days: 09 November 2015. The first step in achieving your aim of becoming a Primary teacher must be getting your application sorted so that you are offered a place to begin your training.

    When to apply

    And do you have the English, maths and science qualifications that are required for entry to ITT? If you don't have all three, then you might need to get those this year.

    My initial reaction to your question above is: wouldn't it be best to concentrate on your degree studies to ensure that you are successful and progress to your ITT with a solid foundation?

    Because, of course, your ITT will not be able to go ahead if you don't get that degree!

    As for which extras will make you more attractive to a future employer as a Primary teacher, do you have any musical skills that could be developed? The ability to play the piano or the guitar is always welcome.

    I am not too sure that the two that you mention above would have wide appeal, it would depend on the individual schools. Why don't you ask this question on the Primary Forum, where you'll get the views of people more closely involved.

    Or indeed, ask the Head of the school where you are a governor!

    Best wishes

    Gsr25 likes this.
  4. Qashquai

    Qashquai New commenter

    Thanks all for the replies so far. To try and answer some of your questions:

    1. Yes I have the maths/English/science requirements covered.
    2. Applications for ITT are in process
    3. I did the 3 day First Aid at Work with Red Cross (and also have military First Aid covered)
    4. I'm on the final module of my OU degree and I feel that I could comfortably take on another course as I will be on "gardening leave" until March and believe I have the capacity. If I do the Forest School course I already have agreement from my local primary to help run their outdoor classes/after school club for my portfolio
    5. Extras - Fluent French, Knowledge of German and a basic Arabic qualification, I'm an aircraft engineer by trade so DT/IT would also be covered.

    I have spoken with my head, but was after a more impartial set of advice. ;-)

    I will also look in the Primary forums as suggested.

    Thanks for your time

  5. Gsr25

    Gsr25 Occasional commenter

    Apologies, Qashquai, I misunderstood your OP and wasn't sure how intensive your first aid training was!
    You will probably find the FS course won't quite slot in to that time frame and will probably overlap with the ITT, however having a group and a space to do the 6 sessions is something that can be tricky for many so you've got that sorted.
    It sounds like you have lots to offer the world of teaching.

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