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Has anyone moved from Secondary to Primary

Discussion in 'Primary' started by batcat, Feb 14, 2009.

  1. I am not sure whether to do a PGCE in Secondary or Primary Teaching since I am interested in both. It is already too late in the year for any further Primary Courses which are within reach of my home, so I was considering whether to apply for a Secondary PGCE course which would be more accessible with a view to moving into Primary School Teaching after my NQT year is completed.
    Does anyone have any experience of moving from the Secondary sector to Primary? How difficult is this to do?
    I expect it is probably easier to move from Primary to Secondary assuming you have a specialised skill or degree, since there appears to be more jobs in Secondary schools. Or am I wrong?
    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    X bc

  2. tafkam

    tafkam Occasional commenter

    Indeed, your biggest issue is likely to be the lack of posts in primary. Combine that with your lack of experience or training, and there are relatively few schools who would appoint you one year after your induction.
    Have you considered one of the middle years courses? These usually have vacancies later than the primary courses, but would allow you a placement in each. That might help to sure up your decision, and give you a bit more primary training.
  3. Hi Tafkam,
    Middle Years would indeed give me the option of covering both primary and secondary, Key Stage 2 and 3 levels, but unfortunately for me there are only a few middle years courses and all of these are too far for me to comute to. Since I have family commitments it would not be an option for me to move. That it part of the problem, which is why I thought that training in Secondary level would be an alternative solution. Perhaps you are right...although they say that once you are qualfied as a teacher you can teach at any level... in reality it may not be the case. Hence, my original posting.... has anyone succeeded in achieving this crossover, and how difficult was it.
    thanks anyway.
  4. tafkam

    tafkam Occasional commenter

    I think lots of people have made the move.
    The vast majority has a few years' experience, and then did supply work in primaries before making the move. Relatively few will have made such a direct move -and fewer still in times of teacher over-supply.
    If your long-term aim is definitely to teach primary, then I'd look to take the course in a year's time rather than trying to crowbar your way in via Secondary.
  5. sueemc

    sueemc New commenter

    I moved from secondary to primary. its very different. there are more jobs and promotion opps in secondary. however, my personal case isnt straightforward, pgce secondary in business (degree in comp sci), head of IT dept in secondary, lectured FE, took 5 years off to have kids and went back to teaching part-time on a temporary contract in primary. now perm. in same sch. there are another 3 teachers in the school i work in that orig. trained and worked in secondary. it is definitely possible, but there are fewer jobs generally, and much less opps. for promotion... know what you want... if you are very career oriented and want to progress up, go the secondary route. i would imagine going straight into primary after a secondary pgce to be very difficult... you will be questioned (if interviewed at all..) why did you do a secondary pgce? it seems you know you want to do primary already?... if so, take some time volunteering in a local primary whilst you wait to apply for the right course at the right time!
  6. IUf you know you want to teach in Primary, wait and do a Primary PGCE - not only will it make it a million times easier, if not just at all possible, for you to get a job in Primary it will make your life once you have a job so so so much easier. Plus there are fewer jobs in Primary, so you need to give yourself every chance possible and getting a Sec PGCE is setting yourself up to fail really. Plus Secondary is just plain nasty [​IMG]
    I was Secondary and have sort of fallen into Primary (I think I am very very lucky - my school is in special measures and were *desperate* for a teacher, so I went from day to day supply there to a long term job now), and feel like I am drowning as the paperwork and red tape is a million times different - admittedly its a little harder for me than some as I didn't go to 'normal' primary school myself so have no idea what goes on in one really, but the planning that has to be done, the pieces of paper than have to be shown and the gubbins along those lines I am finding quite hard, and think if I'd done a Priary PGCE this would be so so much easier. I can imagine trying to do the planning (not that this was ever checked in any of my secondary jobs) or producing resources or things like that for my Secondary jobs without having the training and the being shown where all the secret websites and resources are would have been a nightmare.
    Little things like knowing what a child should be able to do at each age, and what a level 2a in writing actually looks like I imagine would be so much easier to get through on a course than on the fly.
    I think someone else said about getting experience and waiting until next year (sorry can only see original post now), I'd second this - you might be able to get unqualified supply work, or TA supply work or something, and then work in both Primaries and Secondaries to see which you prefer really - but remember one day is very different from week in and week out somewhere.
    Good luck :)

  7. I'm a linguist and I moved to Primary from Secondary about 20 years ago. I've never regretted it, as moving to Primary has enabled me to work in subject areas other than languages.

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