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How far do you commute for your PGCE? (How far would you be willing?)

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by Findlotte, Jan 4, 2016.

  1. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    I've been accepted onto a SCITT for Psychology and was told that I'd be placed in a school which offers it at both GCSE and A-Level so that I can teach across two phases - I expected this.

    Out of 14 secondary schools that they work with, I'm eligible to work with 2. One of them is 34 miles from me (hour drive) the other is 60 miles from me (over an hour). I'm not in a position to relocate for one year and I'm hoping I get the former school.

    Just wanted to know how far everybody else commutes? or if you haven't started your course, like me, how far are you willing to commute?
  2. teachingspurs

    teachingspurs New commenter

    I have not started my course yet, but I am relocating to be within walking distance of the first one. Hopefully the second one will be nearby.
  3. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    Are you planning to stay there for longer than a year? or are you moving back?

    Each of my courses are an hour in the opposite direction ha :D
  4. teachingspurs

    teachingspurs New commenter

    I am a career changer and so my plan is to buy a house with my wife up there, though it may change come September.
  5. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    Mine too, I'm waiting until my NQT year to relocate though.
  6. bananatree84

    bananatree84 Occasional commenter

    I commute 35 miles away so an hour. Not planning to relocate though as my son has ASD but love where I teach.
  7. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    Do you feel it's impacted your ability to do well on your placement?
  8. oHelzo

    oHelzo Occasional commenter

    For my PGCE I moved back in with my parents 200 miles away (having moved out 15 years prior) for one placement (nothing available in the entire north of my county and the only other alternative was Scotland which couldn't happen due to different systems). My other was the other side of town from where I live, but the other student there the same time as me had come from 120 miles away to stay with her parents because she couldn't get anything local to her. There's such a shortage of decent Science teachers, there was no-one available to train us :/
  9. alla_ova

    alla_ova Occasional commenter

    My first placement was 2,5 h away :(, my second placement was within walking distance (and it came with a super nice mentor :)).
  10. gh194380

    gh194380 New commenter

    I'm training next year. Relocating 30 miles to be within a 20 min drive of my main school next. I'll be travelling back and forth once per week though for the training sessions at the lead school.
  11. bananatree84

    bananatree84 Occasional commenter

    No I
  12. bananatree84

    bananatree84 Occasional commenter

    No I don't to be honest. I quite like the drive a chance to assess how the day went in my head.
  13. Robinsong1980

    Robinsong1980 New commenter

    I start my PGCE in September and the university is 25 miles from my home (travelling time around 30-40 mins). I live in Scotland and the university is in England which makes things a little complicated, but my nearest university to do the PGDE in Scotland is around an hour's drive, possibly 2 in peak traffic. I could have done the course for free in Scotland, but I'm paying 9 grand to do it in England to be nearer home.

    I have a husband, 3 children and a home so moving wasn't an option. I also have a son with ASD (he also has dyspraxia) so it was important for me to keep the commute down so I am not too far from him (or his siblings). At worst I might end up with my placements being as far as 2 hours from home but I'll just have to deal with that if it does happen.
  14. therunningman

    therunningman New commenter

    Would it be possible to use the train for the journey?

    When o was at Uni, I would often travel home by train at the weekend and would spend the hour planning or marking on the train.
  15. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    For three years I commuted 40 miles to school (and of course another 40 back) every day. I loved the school and as you say you get a chance to assess the day.

    However when you bright young things get permanent jobs I seriously recommend that you do not commute more than you have to because it is VERY tiring after a while. It's time in a day you don't get back and if you have meetings after school or parents evenings it makes for very long days.

    At the moment I commute about 15 miles there and back - this takes about half an hour in the morning (I go in early) and 40 minutes on the way home. This is manageable on the whole.

    It's sometimes good not to live right on the doorstep of the school.

    Goog luck to you all - teaching is tough these days but still rewarding.
    DYNAMO67 likes this.
  16. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    Okay, that's insane.
    exhausted much?
  17. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    Unfortunately not, It's too expensive by train (£44 return a day for one school and £68 return per day for the further school) and would include changes and just be longer overall, which is annoying.
  18. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    It's only 39 weeks, or 156 days of driving back and forth. I totally got this.
  19. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    To be honest, with your subject choice this was always going to be the case. As I think i mentioned to you before, it is niche, and a lot of schools, mine included which is also one of the biggest post-16 centres in our county, only offer a bit of psychology.

    How far? It really depends on the journey time. Looking at mileage can hide a lot. My commute is pretty much the same as @peakster. I don't mind it at all (mostly) but it is a fairly straightforward run. I could work closer, but i would hate to do a cross city commute. It would be shorter but much more stressful. I like the fact that I can switch off, I often run through lesson plans and ideas on my way there. I have taught for a while though.

    The 34 mile option is tough, but probably do-able as a trainee.

    Without being all doom and gloom, I worry for you @Quitoon if the school you are placed in is 60 miles away. To be honest I don't really see that as do-able. Teaching is tough, even when you are only a trainee. If that is the case, I would either consider the viability of taking up the place or look for lodgings in the week. It is not only the travelling but also the cost of it. Are you being paid on your course?
  20. Findlotte

    Findlotte Established commenter

    I knew it was going to be limited and chose it over a combined sociology course.
    The 34m school seems alright, its not a bad journey, straightforward enough. It's the longer one which I'm hoping I'm not given, although with only 2 schools available and 2 placements needed I assume I'll be put there at some point? I'm not sure if I need to teach both key stages in both schools, If that's not the case, there's a lot of schools closer that only do it at A level.

    Psychology isn't eligible for salaried places or bursary so I'm self funding for the year, otherwise I would have considered train. Relocating isn't an option with a mortgage. I can't afford to rent and pay that too haha!

    It's only a year.

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