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How to find a school to take you on as a GTP student?

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by OoFaithoO, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. OoFaithoO

    OoFaithoO New commenter

    Hi ctinblue7,
    I am also 21 and will be applying for the GTP next year. Contrary to the above poster th GTP is one of the ONLY options for 'older' people wanting to go in to teaching that are unable to go back to univeristy and study for a PGCE.
    That, however, does NOT mean by any standard that you are not viable to take the course. There is no where on the GTP website that I will be taking that discourages younger people to join, and it certainly does not suggest that being younger means you will have less life experience; I'm pretty sure that whilst this is a bonus, it is not one of the prerequisites of the course.
    I, too, have a large amount of work experience, from running a theatre school on my own, to mentoring troubled kids and encouraging others to carry on to higher education, and running a year 7 drama club. I feel like I possibly have more relevant school based experience than a 30-year-old that has worked in accountancy for their working life. Whilst I have been at these schools I have come across 4 GTP students in the Arts section of one school alone, and they were all straight from university. That said, when I went to the information evening it was about equal interest judging by the people that turned up (myself included).
    My first answer would to be thoroughly assessing if the GTP is for you, I personally can't stomach the idea of another year at university, and thrive on the live school environment. Do some work experience in more than one school. If your university is like mine my final day is early May, that leaves you a good few weeks to offer your services. Always write a thank you letter and ask if they would consider you for a potential GTP student. There's always the chance to network too, and the HOD of your subject may be prepared to talk to you about it and consider you.
    With regards to the actual letter writing, I can't help you too much there. I will be following guidelines from previous threads on this website, and I don't actually know if you need two separate statements. Don't forget that you need to ensure that your referees are aware that they will need to write you a reference: they need time to have it ready before you need it.

    Don't be discouraged about age. Right now we all need to take any opportunity we can get, so applying for both th GTP and PGCE is wise.

    Good Luck!!!
  2. Hello there

    I think the point is that the GTP is very competitive and providers are looking for people with lots of experience, which generally means they are older. Everyone I know who has a place has been in another job first. I'm not suggesting that's the case for all places but most.
    You need to do as much as you can to get a broad experience of education whilst at uni to ensure you stand out. I have worked for 4 years to secure a place, it's very tough!
  3. Agree to disagree then OoFaithoO.
    By "older" I simply meant older than someone who had gone straight from school/college to uni and then into teaching ... ie older than 21/22 in most cases. I was only 30 at the time of applying to the GTP, so count myself in that category - I wasn't implying "old" per se.
    One of the key motivating factors behind starting the GTP as an alternative to the PGCE was that the teaching profession was missing out on people who, at whatever stage in their career, wanted to move into teaching and had the potential to be excellent teachers but were not in a position to lose a salary and go to uni. They wanted to encourage people "from industry" to come into teaching.
    I agree that anyone considering the GTP vs the PGCE (or other ITT route) should look at the differences and work out which one suits them best. If you want to be "taught" then go for the PGCE, if you want to learn on the job (which means, in many cases, learning by your own mistakes) and can self manage and self motivate then GTP is probably better option. Again, just my opinion - and a very watered down, brief version of how I would summarise the differences. (You will, of course, learn a lot in schools and will learn through your mistakes on the PGCE too - but the main difference is that on most GTP courses the theory comes throughout the year, rather than be loaded up at the front so you have to go with your gut instinct and/or what you have learned from observing others more than things which you have had time to consider based on lectures/tutorials/discussion/reading of which there are less on the GTP course. Not saying one is better than the other either - it just depends on the person)
    Should you write a different personal statement? ABSOULTELY YES!!!!! It's like applying for two different jobs. Certain aspects should be similar - but in your application details you should make the reader think a) this person really wants to be a teacher, b) this person could really be a good teacher and c) this could manifest itself on this course. If you don't address the course then it's not an application for that course.
    GTPs are hugely competitive (only about 5-10% of trainee teachers are on a GTP course), so you should show why the GTP will be good for (and you for it, for that matter!).
    Good luck to you both!
  4. I'm current GTP, and we have 3 or 4 straight from uni on our course.
    Apparently the personal info page is removed from the applications for shortlisting/interview to prevent age discrimination
  5. welshwizard

    welshwizard Established commenter Forum guide

    Firstly find out from the local EBITT's how many primary places are funded by the TDA. This will give you an idea regarding the competition and the application deadlines.
    Get direct experience in a school( otherwise how do you know that teaching is for you) some uni's operate an associate programme which allows you ro get paid work as a TA in school while studying.
    The majority of successful candidates I see have substantial classroom experience , some have been working as TA's before doing the GTP.
    Keep an eye out for the changes coming in ITT the new teaching Schools may open up opportunities in your area.
  6. Hi I am 27 and I am going to apply to do the GTP with Newman university this September to hopefully start in September 2012. I have been advised that I need to find an employing school before submitting an application. Trouble is, I have absolutely no idea how to find an employing school. I am volunteering once a week to gain work experience in a local primary school and I also volunteer with the local brownie group .
    Does anybody have any advice as to how I find an employing school? How do I compose my letter? Do I include a CV?
    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
    Liz :)
  7. loo16

    loo16 New commenter

    Hi Liz
    I would start by asking the school you already volunteer at if they would be interested in supporting you. If not it's a case of writing to as many local schools as possible which is what I ended up doing. I wrote around 50 letters explaining what I had to offer to teaching and their school etc. Talk about your experience with the Brownies and at school and what skills you have developed here eg. working in a team, positive relationships.
    Also look on your local council's website as some schools advertise for a GTP position.
    Definately include your CV with the letter and sell yourself as best you can. Tell them all the skills you have that are essential for teaching (sense of humour, energy, enthusiasm, commitment).
    My last piece of advice would be to start your search early. Unfortunately for me the school I was volunteering at were unable to support me due to staff changes which meant a last minute panic in finding a school - v stressful!
    Good luck
  8. Hi Lucy

    Thank you for being so helpful! That is great advice. I will start searching ASAP as the school I volunteer at are unable to support me.

    Thanks again
    Liz :)
  9. I would agree that you need to get in quick - my school was very happy to allow people to apply to do the GTP with them... until they got inundated with requests! I think they had 5 in one week, all turned down. They ended up supporting 4 applications this year, and two of us have been successful.

    Contact the GTP dept of your local university to find out what schools they have worked with in the past to start you off. I just rang a few and got invited in to the first one I contacted. I'm now a TA there and am starting the GTP in September.

    I think a major challenge you will face is the competition. You will be vying for places with experienced TAs and CSs who already work in the schools they want to train in. You definitely need to tailor your application specifically for the GTP, and prove why that is the right course for you even though you are younger with less other work/professional experience.

    Have you looked at any SCITT courses? You spend more time in schools than on a traditional PGCE, so it may be a good back up option for you? So difficult with funding and lack of info from the TDA at the moment...

    Good luck :)
  10. I'd definitely look at your local EBITT providers first and see what their requirements are first. For example, the 3 providers that I applied to didn't require applicants to find their own school. Two of them will only place you in their partnership schools which they match you to should you be successful in finding a place. The third one (who I've accepted a place with) give you the option of finding your own school or they will provide one for you. So check out your providers first as you may find that you don't need to stress about finding a school!

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