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Dear Stephen, Got a PGCE in 1999 and need QTS to get job.

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by inti, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. inti

    inti New commenter

    I was in FE from 94? ? 2000. I was full-time course leader for BTEC Nat Dip in Art & Design in 2 different colleges. Whilst there I undertook my teacher training: got the old City & Guilds Cert in F.E & Higher Ed and D32/33, then completed PGCE in FE via Manchester Met Uni in 1999.

    After having my children (I am 44 now), I have now returned to art teaching and changed sectors from FE to secondary. For the past 3 years I have had fixed term (maternity cover) contracts at 5 different secondary schools and been employed at Point 6 on the unqualified scale. Each contract has been back-to-back continuous employment. I love teaching this age group; I have lots of experience under my belt, excellent references, and expertise in KS3/GCSE/A level art.

    I would like now for my employment to become permanent. I am in a quandary about exactly how to do this.

    My PGCE does not have QTLS (it did not exist then) and without either QTS or QTLS I am finding it very difficult to get interviewed for permanent positions.

    Question 1 ? Is there any way that my PGCE in FE can be accredited with QTLS when I am no longer employed in that sector? (I understand that Mr Gove is considering parity between QTS/QTLS now.)

    Question 2 ? Are some schools more bothered than others about QTS? Should I ask schools with vacancies beforehand if they would consider me? (I ask this as I know that academies can employ who they wish to and I also worked in the independent sector and QTS mattered little to them.)

    Question 3 ? What options do I have to get qualified? I have looked into the Assessment Based Option route at Uni of Glos, however, my teaching contracts have been typically 6-9 months and the schools have not been interested in assisting me on such a short contract. The GTP (I understand) appears to only want priority subjects, which is understandable. My last school suggested EM Direct as an option, but again, places are scarce and priority given to other subjects. BTW, I live in Northamptonshire.

    Question 4 ? The final one (I promise!). Is it just worth taking the maternity cover contracts and hope that it eventually leads to a permanent post? I have made some fantastic contacts over the years. Every department head and Headteacher I have worked with have told me that they wanted me to stay, if only they could have. They have supplied me with glowing references and consider me to be an outstanding teacher. I would just like to know the most effective route I can take to get a permanent position.

    Any advice you have for me would be greatly received. Thanks.
  2. inti

    inti New commenter

    I need to ask yet another question (after speaking to the Headteacher today).
    He seems to think that I could be employed on MPS (should Goves's Wolf Report on parity between FE & Secondary PGCE's be put in place soon).
    However, my PGCE is a 'vintage type' without QTLS. I realise a crystal ball might be needed to answer my question, but there must be some notes in the report which state which lecturing qualifications apply in the regards to parity.
    Any ideas? Anyone?
  3. Hi,

    In answer to your first question, as this is a further education issue you would need to speak to Manchester Met University about the possibility of having your PGCE accredited with QTLS. The proposed parity between QTS and QTLS would require you to hold the latter in order to work in a state-maintained primary or secondary school. A background in FE (including your PGCE qualification) would not be enough.

    QTS is a mandatory requirement in state-maintained primary and secondary schools in England and Wales. Academies and independent schools set their own entry requirements so QTS may not be necessary if you wish to work in one of those.

    The Assessment Only option and the Graduate Teacher Programme (GTP) would be the routes most suited to your current situation. The latter is available for the majority of subjects, however as you have indicated there is a greater emphasis on providing places for the highest priority subjects. I would still recommend looking into this as a possible route to QTS. The alternatives would be mainly university-based courses such as the Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE). You can find more information about the various options available to you via the following page of the TDA website:


    In regards to your last question, as stated above, you would need to have QTS if the school you wish to work in is state-maintained. If you are on a maternity cover contract at an academy or independent school I would suggest speaking to the headteacher about the possibility of obtaining a permanent contract.

    I hope this information helps and I wish you the very best with your efforts of becoming a full-time teacher.

    Stephen Hillier, TDA
  4. inti

    inti New commenter

    Thank you very much Stephen. Things are pretty much 'up in the air' at the moment on the parity issue. However, there are things I can be getting on with to put myself in a more desirable position with my qualifications. Experience-wise, I have no issues, thanks to being in so many schools over the past 3 years.
    I did get in touch with Manchester. They did supply me with an avenue to get QTLS. I can submit a webfolio of evidence to IfL (if I have contact with post-16 learners) and that would suffice. It must be recent and it can be paid or voluntary work. Just thought that I would add this in case there are any other folks like me in need of an answer. I am not sure if I could take the PGCE route, my closest is Birmingham and would need to move (not something I can do with a family in tow). The other option is Assessment Only option, and would need to be employed in a school who is willing to be my supporter.
    I am on the case!
    Thanks again. Sound advice, as always.

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