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I really want to change career to teaching but worrried about cost

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by Joanne2009, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. Hi,
    I work for the NHS (15 years), part-time, and have 2 children aged 3 and 7. My youngest child starts nursery this September so I hope to apply for a teacher training course soon to start September 2012.
    I am educated up to MSc level and have 7 years experience as a STEM ambassador. I really wanted to become a teacher when I was younger but ended up training within the NHS. I love my STEM work and I have been waiting until my youngest was old enough for school before I did anything.
    I really worry about quitting my NHS job to train as I am unsure about what I would be entitled to get in help. My husband earns less than I do and we have a bigger mortgage now. Also, I worry that I will not get a teaching post at the end of it all.
    Has anyone done the OU course and worked at the same time? I am thinking of dropping down to 2 days, with the NHS, so that I would be able to do 3 days in a school whilst training. Can I do this? I am also thinking of applying to a GTP course at a local school (the senior school my children will attend in the future). But, I know that there will be a lot of competition for these places.
    I hope to teach Biology up to A-level, Chemistry up to GCSE and I also have an interest in careers lessons (i do a lot of these now with my STEM work).
    Anyone got any advice??
    Thanks
    Joanne
    PS I am 40 next year so wondering if I am too old??? But, I guess if we all have to work till we are 66 I am not :-0
     
  2. Hi,
    I work for the NHS (15 years), part-time, and have 2 children aged 3 and 7. My youngest child starts nursery this September so I hope to apply for a teacher training course soon to start September 2012.
    I am educated up to MSc level and have 7 years experience as a STEM ambassador. I really wanted to become a teacher when I was younger but ended up training within the NHS. I love my STEM work and I have been waiting until my youngest was old enough for school before I did anything.
    I really worry about quitting my NHS job to train as I am unsure about what I would be entitled to get in help. My husband earns less than I do and we have a bigger mortgage now. Also, I worry that I will not get a teaching post at the end of it all.
    Has anyone done the OU course and worked at the same time? I am thinking of dropping down to 2 days, with the NHS, so that I would be able to do 3 days in a school whilst training. Can I do this? I am also thinking of applying to a GTP course at a local school (the senior school my children will attend in the future). But, I know that there will be a lot of competition for these places.
    I hope to teach Biology up to A-level, Chemistry up to GCSE and I also have an interest in careers lessons (i do a lot of these now with my STEM work).
    Anyone got any advice??
    Thanks
    Joanne
    PS I am 40 next year so wondering if I am too old??? But, I guess if we all have to work till we are 66 I am not :-0
     
  3. les25paul

    les25paul Lead commenter

    You are certainly not too old but be aware that there is a shortage of jobs at the moment.
    Check out the jobseekers/unemployed/NQT forums for a picture of what to expect if you do make the change.

     
  4. I'm not sure what area of the country you're in but biology is the most popular science to train in. So although there is an overall shortage of science teachers (not so much in some areas of the country where there are many ITT providers) the shortage is pretty much in physics and chemistry. What is your degree in? Could you do a subject knowledge enhancement to teach one of those subjects? I would be wary of giving up a well-paid permanent job in the current climate.
    Also what school experience do you have at the moment? To do GTP you are usually asked for at least 2 weeks full-time experience in a school so the provider knows you know what you're letting yourself into. GTP is intense, mine was very much 'sink or swim' and I was thrown in at the deep end.
     
  5. EcoLady

    EcoLady New commenter

    With your youngest in nursery, can you increase your working hours and start saving? Once they are both in school, could you increase further and/or use some time to get more classroom experience?
    Student Finance does the tuition fee loans, plus maintenance loans and grants depending on your household income. There is a ready reckoner on their website (link below). My husband is on a decent salary but I'll get a grant as well as the loan. We've been planning my career change for some time so have been able to put a bit of saving to one side to help once I've halved our income.
    http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/EducationAndLearning/UniversityAndHigherEducation/StudentFinance/Gettingstarted/DG_171574
    Good luck :)
     
  6. Hi Joanne,
    Teaching
    is a graduate profession, so in addition to your MSc qualification you will
    also need to hold a bachelor’s degree, or a suitable equivalent.


    You
    have mentioned teaching at A-level, as well as teaching careers lessons. I can
    only offer specific advice in relation to primary or secondary teaching, so the
    information below will be in reference to this.


    The
    most popular route into teaching is the Postgraduate Certificate in Education
    (PGCE). If you were to do this full-time you may receive a bursary, as well as
    financial support to help with the course fees. You can find out about the
    current bursaries and financial support offered by visiting the following page
    of the TDA website:


    www.tda.gov.uk/get-into-teaching/funding/training-in-england/postgraduate-funding.aspx


    As
    far as the employment prospects are concerned, this depends very much upon the
    subject you wish to teach. A subject such as Chemistry is regarded as a
    priority area of recruitment due to a need for more Chemistry teachers, and as
    such you may find many employment opportunities once you have finished your
    training.


    You
    would need to speak to the Open University directly to discuss the way in which
    their initial teacher training (ITT) courses are structured, and whether or not
    it is possible to do the school placements on certain days to fit around work
    commitments.


    You
    could also look into the possibility of doing a flexible PGCE. These are ITT
    courses that are designed to fit around other commitments. You would still
    receive the same amount of funding as you would for a full-time PGCE; however
    it would be spread out over a longer period of time. You can search for these
    courses on the Graduate Teacher Training Registry website:


    www.gttr.ac.uk


    I
    would definitely recommend applying for the Graduate Teacher Programme as well.
    For someone such as yourself who is looking to change their career, this would
    be an ideal route as it would allow you to continue to receive a salary as you
    train.


    You
    certainly wouldn’t be considered to be too old at 40! New teachers from a
    variety of age-ranges enter the profession for the first time on a regular
    basis. Experience is considered a valuable commodity to bring to the classroom
    environment, and you should not be put off in any way by seeing age as a
    potential obstacle.


    I
    appreciate that changing your career can be a daunting prospect however I hope
    that should you choose to embark on a teaching career, it will be a successful
    and enjoyable experience.


    Stephen
    Hillier, TDA
     

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