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From Trainer to Teacher.....Thoughts?

Discussion in 'Career clinic' started by adsseed84, Jan 9, 2018.

  1. adsseed84

    adsseed84 New commenter

    Afternoon All,

    I'm currently serving in the Armed Forces with approx 6 yrs until I can leave (and take an immediate pension). I have just finished a 3 year post teaching in a Defence training establishment, where I completed a PGCE in Post Compulsory Education (no college/school related subject, as they took my Defence role as my subject specialism). I have also also just attained my QTLS status through ETF/SET, hopefully broadening my options to teach within FE and secondary schools. 6 years may seem like a long way off, but in terms of getting the most out of my training grants and preparing for life outside of Defence, I need to get some plans together.

    Well that's the background out of the way.....

    My previous teaching has good links to physics/maths related topics/theories, hence I was thinking of becoming a maths teacher; hopefully in a secondary school but I am open to FE. I would like to teach GCSE and I was looking for ideas (and please be open/honest/brutal if needs be with your comments) to increase my chance of employment once I move into 'civilian street'.

    Here is what I have thought of so far:
    - I don't require any further initial teacher training, due to my PGCE.
    - I should go in on the main teacher pay scale, rather than NQT due to my QTLS.
    - I don't need a degree in maths to teach GCSE (according to the DfE).
    - I could volunteer in a school to build up some knowledge of the GCSE curriculum.
    - I could get the curriculum and give it a good read.
    - Attend a return to teaching course (that is maths specific).
    - Attend CPD events that specialise in maths.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    A lot can change in 6 years!
     
    adsseed84 likes this.
  3. carriecat10

    carriecat10 Established commenter Community helper

    The main question I have is about your current degree - what is it in?
    Even if you want to limit yourself to teaching GCSE or below, you would make your self much more attractive to schools by having a degree in maths and this would mean you could be more flexible.
     
    adsseed84 likes this.
  4. adsseed84

    adsseed84 New commenter

    Firstly, thanks to you both for commenting.

    I appreciate a lot can change and I would have to be current when I do start looking at future employment. That said, it will take me 6-8 years to complete OU study for a maths degree; especially due to the tempo of my current job. To this end, I would like to gain as much experience in a school classroom (I work shifts, which leaves me scope to dedicate a day to a school for free) and potentially qualifications in the build up to the end of my 6 years.

    If I 'need' to have a degree (I do not have a degree in any subject) then obviously I would look to start in the next year. Having completed a 2 year part-time PGCE whilst in the forces and having the usual family commitments (2 kids), I don't want to do one just for the sake of it; even though I know that I would become immersed in it. I appreciate that a degree would help (carriecat10), but I could start my OU and complete once I'm in a teaching role; as long as I can get one (my main worry without a degree).

    I know that I can attain lucrative contracts training in the corporate/military training sector, however I have spent 15 years working all over the world and missing out on my children growing up is a concern. Teaching in a school or college would allow me to provide stability for my family, in an area that we wish to live; rather than where the corporate contract is (generally the other end of the country for me).

    My main aim is to maximise my time in the next 6 years, in order to have the best flexibility when I leave for forces.
     
  5. elder_cat

    elder_cat Established commenter

    Please don't take this as a negative response, it is not intended to suggest that teaching is a bad profession to enter. But I would suggest there are other things to consider, beyond those mentioned by other posters. I served in HM Forces myself, before going on to do a degree and PGCE, and entering FE teaching post-16 students. The issues around curriculum etc are all very relevant. But beyond that, the two things I found most challenging to adjust to, were the fact that educational institutions operate in a very different way, and with a very different mindset, to what I was used to in the Forces, and the general behavioural standards and attitude to learning, of the students themselves. I would strongly suggest that if at all possible, you try to arrange to spend some time in the classroom, so you can get a feel for what to expect. It will be very different to what you have experienced so far.
     
  6. adsseed84

    adsseed84 New commenter

    Thanks for your honesty, that is just the kind of response I'm after. I do hope to spend some time in the classroom this year and I expect it to be a bit of a shock to the system, especially when it comes to approaching admin/discipline issues.

    I haven't pinned my hopes completely on teaching in a classroom, I just want to give myself the best chance of that being an option. I have worked in course design, as well as a learning and development manager for trainers. I do think that I want to go into some form of education/training setting, I just need to experience as much as that as possible in the next 6 years.
     
    elder_cat likes this.
  7. elder_cat

    elder_cat Established commenter

    I hope everything works out for you, and best of luck with whatever you do in the future :)
     
    adsseed84 likes this.
  8. adsseed84

    adsseed84 New commenter

    Much appreciated :)
     
  9. WJClarkson

    WJClarkson Occasional commenter

    [QUOTE="adsseed84, post: 12358986, member: 22858459]
    If I 'need' to have a degree (I do not have a degree in any subject) then obviously I would look to start in the next year. Having completed a 2 year part-time PGCE whilst in the forces and having the usual family commitments (2 kids), I don't want to do one just for the sake of it; even though I know that I would become immersed in it. I appreciate that a degree would help (carriecat10), but I could start my OU and complete once I'm in a teaching role; as long as I can get one (my main worry without a degree).
    .[/QUOTE]

    How did you get a PGCE without a degree? I thought the idea of it being a post-grad qualification was the you needed to have a degree first.

    I also don't think anyone will take you on to teach unless you have a degree of somesort.
     
  10. fraisier

    fraisier Established commenter

    That's the theory and what the blurb from the DfE would have you believe. In practice, forget it, believe me, you will have precious little time to yourself and to devote to your family, that is certainly the case in a state or indie school (not sure about in a HE college). It is absolutely full on, 70-80 hrs a week, you'd be lucky to have half an afternoon off a week, it drains the life out of you, especially state schools, try the indie sector, much better (still very busy but job satisfaction far higher) but places are highly coveted.

    There is no stability either in teaching any longer in the way most people understand the term "stability", especially as progress through the ranks and "become expensive" (therefore dispensable). Sadly, it really isn't a profession I would recommend to anybody these days, absolutely not. It is not a profession anymore anyway, only by name. Things may get better, we all live in hope, but I doubt it.
     
    agathamorse likes this.
  11. adsseed84

    adsseed84 New commenter

    Sorry about the delayed response, I have been away for a little while. I have a PGCE and they took my specialisation within the HM Forces as my subject (closely linked to Physics/Maths). I am in the process of starting a degree which is closely linked to Computer Science too, so hopefully that will help and that is off the back of the comments on here saying a relevant subject degree is vital.

    With regards to Fraisiers comments, I understand that teaching will include long hours (I do these now) and by stability I was referring to being able to leave my family in one part of the UK for more than 2 years; without me being sent to somewhere hot and sandy for 6 months at a time.

    I do appreciate everyone's comments (and you taking the time to respond) and the plot thickens with regards to being undecided over secondary/FE/HE or even teaching/training in the corporate sector. I just know that when I'm done with the Forces, I don't really want to stay in the Defence sector and I really enjoyed my last teaching/training role (and the work on my PGCE).

    I do keep a continuous eye on developments/issues within the education sector and I also appreciate that most people are avoiding teaching or even running away from it. I work with a former Physics teacher who doesn't have many kind words about his time there.
     
    agathamorse likes this.

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