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Is the PGCE still worth doing?

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by trainee2009, Jun 29, 2010.

  1. In my opinion as someone who has just finished the pgce I would not advise anyone to complete a pgce at this time. I teach an apparantly shortage subject and uni practically told us we were all guaranteed a job at the end of the year. His wrong there were, and I am one of the unlucky many who has not managed to secure a job.
  2. PaulDG

    PaulDG Occasional commenter

    I've heard around 10% in "shortage subjects" have been unable to find jobs this year. Can anyone confirm?
  3. Unfortunately on my course its much more than 10% unemployed and on a different subject at my uni, only 15 out of 70 have found jobs!
  4. Thatsmyloaf

    Thatsmyloaf New commenter

    Darn - i was hoping for some more optimistic reponses [​IMG]
  5. welshwizard

    welshwizard Established commenter Forum guide

    Despite the hype employment based training only accounts for 10% of ITT nationally. The qusality of this training really does depend upon the school and normal everyday disruptions - sickness, school closures, relationships with staff and pupils does have a significant impact on the experience.PGCE depends in the same way on the quality of the university the strength of the leccturers and the partnerships with schools to provide placements. Basically good teacher training is good teacher training regardless of whether it is based in school or university- read up the ofsted reports on GTP and university performance and make up your own mind.
    Whichever route it is likely that primary ITT will be substantially cut back in the future- get on while you can
  6. Thatsmyloaf

    Thatsmyloaf New commenter

    My mother taught me never to argue with a wizard, "on" i shall get :)
  7. vuvuzela

    vuvuzela Occasional commenter

    I think it's worth training as a teacher and getting a PGCE so you have a qualification behind you, especially if you want to take it abroard later on. I am flabbergasted to find out that there are inroads into teaching and getting QTS without a PGCE, such as the fast-track route, I think it's called, whereby someone from industry, for example, can start off in a school with no prior teacher training and get paid and trained as a teacher on the job. Then there's all the unqualifiued staff being used a teachers - quite simply astonishing that it has been allowed to happen. I believe everyone who wants to teach should do a complete PGCE course, like I had to when I trained. I can't believe there isn't more of an uproar about this coming from the student teacher camp. Out of interest, how open were your ITT tutors to discussion about this? I imagine they were pretty evasive.
  8. welshwizard

    welshwizard Established commenter Forum guide

    Increasingly the GTP route also involves postgraduate qualifications and masters modules. These are studied alongside the classroom experience. The real ITT question which needs to be answered is what is the best balance between practical and academic learning- unfortunately it is likely to be budget considerations which will determine the shape of future ITT
  9. DalekTeacher

    DalekTeacher New commenter

    It took me a long time to get onto a PGCE as well but I had to fight to get my GCSE Maths sorted. Even though I have finished my PGCE, I am still worried about what is happening in regards to education and how things are going to turn out. I feel that it is still worth doing because you have been given a place and you have fought long to get onto it so I wouldn't give it up now.
  10. pinkkaz

    pinkkaz New commenter

    Practically everyone from my PGCE course have got jobs but then it is a Maths PGCE in London.
    How worthwhile a PGCE is seems to depend on where you do it, who your tutor is and the quality of the placement schools. My PGCE was brilliant and I learnt a huge amount more than I would just "doing the job". The blend of academic study and in-school training complemented each other brilliantly. Maybe other ITT providers aren't run so well though? I don't know.
  11. I've loved my PGCE and would recommend that if you're passionate and keen to teach then you do it. It hasn't been easy - the assignments were tough, the placements were tiring but I've grown so much academically and personally it was worth every minute. I have secured a job for September luckily and would say over 50% of my course (primary, North West) have managed to get jobs and others are getting offers every day. I wouldn't worry about it becoming an "out of date" qualification. The training is extremely rigorous if you're at the right institution and I believe this will always be recognised and valued by head teachers, even if training practices do change. Good luck and enjoy it!! xx
  12. I'd also just like to add that the tories have not and will not bring anything in within the time scale the OP would be looking at to not do the PGCE and then look to doing the new things they are talking about! Also i suspect they are only talking about iit atm and will take a good while to ever come into play! It seems you have spent so long and tried so hard to get onto the PGCE, that you wish to become a teacher soon. You've been given the opportunity to do this so take it! Even if the tories do eventually bring in new things, teachers in schools have a wide variety of qualifications which brought them into teaching (PGCE, SCITT, Bed, GTP and im guessing there may be some older qualifications) and they all still teach and get jobs! It will be just the same when yet another qualification route is added! When you qualify, i doubt they would have brought in the new training routes and certainly no-one will have qualified through them yet, so hopefully you would be able to get a job and once you have experience and have your NQT year under your belt then you will hopefully be in a good position to have a successful career! I know the job market is not good at the moment, but its the same qualifying through most routes!
  13. TDA, I think, were asked by the previous government to put forward a 'proposal' for a shorter route into teaching - the 'paper' is buried deep within their website.
    Can't recall all the details but essentially it consisted of squeezing the 'two' years into one. So definitely not an 'easy' route.
    Only idea in this area the Tories have mentioned in the proposal to make special allowance for (retired) members of the armed forces to enter teaching - these are not definited yet.
    As far as I recall, getting into Primary School Teaching is always going to be hard, as there isn't much of a shortage in this area.
    Cutbacks in next years primary slots have already been annouced, think its something like 30% in England. but you can pop over to the TDA website and get exact figures.
    Frankly I see no reason for increased demand in ITT slots in the future unless the cutbacks to pensions cause a significant loss of existing teachers - ie it becomes no longer worth working the additional years when the value of the pension year is much deminished. Government will either cut existing teacher numbers via a 'failing' schools closer programme in return for not slashing pensions, or slash future pension value if the unions (teachers) get nasty.

    Best bet is to look at your own personal circumstances rather than try to predict the future. As you have gained a slot and you have been trying for 4 years, you should go for it now.
  14. DalekTeacher

    DalekTeacher New commenter

    Everyone on my course managed to get a job by the end of the course but it wasn't easy and things are getting competitive. However, there are always vacancies coming up and I think that since you have been given the chance of going onto a PGCE then you should go for it and give it your all. So long as you have a qualification at the end of the day that awards you with Qualified Teacher Status then that is all that matters. I do think that the PGCE is a very intensive course and I found this out from the word go. They do expect an awful lot in a course that lasts around nine months. It is really packed and I never had a free moment except during Christmas and Easter.
    Rather than getting rid of the PGCE, I wish they would allow time within the programme of study to allow assignments to be fed in seperately so that time can be given to them more attentively. I often found that I had to really rush my assignments even though I started them in advance because there was so much to do.
    I have also had some thoughts that the changes being made to education may make some people in the profession not want to stay in it any longer.
    I would certainly recommend that you go for it. Teaching is a job like no other and for that alone, its well worth doing.
  15. I wouldn't put yourself through one of the most intense and emotionally exhausting years of your life to get a PGCE. It took me 3 years to get on the PGDE course in Scotland. A very demanding year. I then completed my probationary year teaching a primary 1 class, again an exhausting year. I am now an NQT, but with roughly 500 qualified teachers currently unemployed in Fife I am fighting a losing battle to secure a job. In my local authority there were apparently only 10 permanent contracts to go round the 5 to 600 applicants who applied for them. What I joke. Looks like my 4 years hard work has been for nothing and I will be forced to sign on after the summer if I don't find something soon. I wouldn't wish my circumstance on anyone. :(
  16. I haven't written anything on the TES forums thus far but I feel compelled to do so now.
    I would think seriously hard about doing a PGCE at the present time. I have just finished mine and it was the most hellish thing I've ever done. Of course, the experience is different for everyone and mine is but a small drop in the ocean but I can't help feeling having read most of the comment on this and other threads that more people have the same experience I do than on the other side of the fence.
    Also, the job market is getting very competitive for two reasons. One, the government is looking to cut a certain percentage (I'm not sure what, think it's 10% but someone I'm sure will correct me) off the education budge. This will inevitably led to job cuts and while I suspect the Foundation subjects will be the ones that will suffer most, I don't think any of us will be safe from it.
    Secondly, as you say, there is now a fast track system coming in for people who are not trained academically in teaching, may have no prior experience of teaching and will compete for jobs that we have specifically gained qualifications in.
    Now, you would think that being NQT's, we would be cheaper for the schools to pay than existing teachers on the main pay scale or post threshold (although I appreciate there are costs to the school in training NQT's as well) but the sudden influx of non-qualified teachers to learn on the job would be a lot of extra pressure on the system.
    Added to that, only 50% of my course (in my subject), have got jobs so far and there are not a lot of jobs at all out there at the moment because everyone seems to be staying where they are and I'd say thinking about a PGCE would be something you'd have to think very seriously about right now.
    Still, a piece of paper is a piece of paper. It's a Level 6 qualification (Level 7 if Masters) so it will stand you in good stead. Just a few thoughts.
  17. It is absolutely worth doing, in the four schools that i have worked so far, when applications for jobs come in, PGCE is looked at first, then the 4 year QTS and lastly GTP. Infact in two of the schools the heads have refused to even consider staff that trained through the 4 year QTS and GTP!
    It also depends on the subject and the HEI you do it through.
  18. Just to put the other side, my experience so far is that schools prefer those who have done the GTP and select from these first, so I just think it depends on the schools and how familiar they are with the different ways of qualifying. If you are passionate about becoming a teacher, then do it in whatever way you can do it and will suit you best.
  19. And just to add another view as well, I have just trained in London to teach a very fluffy Arts subject. Hardly one in demand! All bar 2 people on my course have secured positions. One doesn't want to teach any more and one has just been rubbish at getting applications in.

    While Primary is far more competitive the fact that you've worked long and hard to get on the course shows your dedication. I think you should go for it. Good luck!
  20. dixie64

    dixie64 New commenter

    I've studied long and hard to secure my place on an early years PGCE at BCU from September and by the sound of it am likely to be doubly disadvantaged by my choice of specialism and my age (currently 45) however I am also a primary school chair of governors and have been fortunate enough to be involved in the selection and appointment process for teachers and in my experience our applications are always considered by the needs of the post not by which method the person entered the profession, I believe it would be quite shallow to consider any entry method above another surely the person specification is far more important. I have no doubt that my journey through the PGCE will be tough and also that there is no guarantee of a job at the end of it but at my age I refuse to regret my decision to give up work and study for my degree and PGCE so I have to remain reasonably optimistic and hope that if I can't get a teaching job then I can use my experience and training in other fields.

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