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PGCE or GTP with 2 young children.

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by StarbabyCat, Mar 28, 2012.

  1. StarbabyCat

    StarbabyCat New commenter

    You really have to apply to both. Its extremely competitive and there are no guarantees....I know people that have been TAs for years and they can't get into a GTP. I have a load of experience and 2 degrees (a BA and MA) and I didn't even get an interview (for history). By all means go for it. I have a place for a PGCE in September and I have a 14 month old. I'm terrified of the workload but I have to do this; its been my ambition for years.
    Good luck! Get some school experience in if you can, I know its hard but it'll really help your application.
  2. Agree with StarbabyCat, apply to both because of the competition and to give yourself the chance of getting into at least one! If you get into both, I think the decision should be made based upon how confident you feel about going into teaching a class straight away, because with the GTP that's what you will have to do. The PGCE will 'wean' you in. The PGCE has more theory to it too, but you have to figure out how to fit everything in on top of all of your commuting - family commitments and essay writing. Good luck whatever you decide :)
  3. Hi I just read your post and have been searching furiously through the forums about a post regarding GTP
    You may need to do some research as I cannot say if this is 100% accurate but, this person posted that they had completed their GTP in England but it wasn't recognised in Scotland.
    If this is the case the PGCE might be better as there may be no restrictions in where it can be used.
  4. Hi there :)

    I cannot remember the exact figures off the top of my head, but I think that this academic year there were approx. 20,000 applications for the GTP and only 4,400 places! Not trying to put you off at all, but really do have to think of the practical side. You can apply for both and it will not hinder your chances of getting accepted on either (I applied for both and was successful in obtaining a PGCE place). Also, do you have a maths degree? Bursaries for maths students are 20k for a first and 15k for a 2:1 (I believe) this year, which would put you in a better position financially than the GTP (I know you said money isn't a decisive factor, but you can't deny 20k would come in 'handy' to most people!!) These bursaries may not be around next year so time is of the essence! Good luck with everything (and sorry if my information isnt 100% accurate...)
  5. Hello,
    Thanks ever so much for your repleis. You have all been very helpful.
    @amay I have a 2:2 in Maths so would currently get £12k but i would probably have to pay 9k in fees to do a PGCE at most uni's. It does sounds like getting onto a GTP is very competitive so I may not have the option to do this, but I will apply for both just incase. I may be better off going for the part-time PGCE at Uni of Hertfordshire. At least the hour to hour and half commute would only be for half the week. Very difficult. Wish i'd done this before I had kids ! Hindsight is a wonderful thing.
    Thanks again for all your advice folks.
  6. Hi
    It was like reading my story when I read your post :) I am an IT Consultant too with around 9 yrs experience currently on a career break. Started working in a local Academy school in the ICT department on a voluntary basis and absolutely loved it.
    Decided to take up teaching as a career option. Tried GTP. The places got filled very quickly and I had applied late (feb). SO they asked me to apply again in Sept 2012. I did not want to wait that long. So I applied for PGCE @ Oxford for Mathematics. Got an offer letter on 28th march. Totally over the moon. I would encourage you to go for PGCE.
    Do some research about universities that offer PGCE and apply through GTTR. You get to give 3 choices I think. I only applied to one.
    I have a 3 yr old and a 7 yr old. So I am kinda scared of September now :))
    But as they say - No pain , No gain. So gonna give it my best shot. Life is surely gonna get interesting :)
    Let me know if you need any info about PGCE. Glad to help.
  7. Just spotted your post!
    I'm about to start Primary PGCE in Sep, retraining from a financial services job- I'm 31 and my children are 3 and 4.
    I think the workload is goning to be tough- the blurb from the uni says uni days will be 9am to 6.30 pm, placement days 8am- 5pm, then assignents, planning etc evenings and weekends.
    I will also be travelling 1 hr each way on uni days BUT two thirds of your PGCE is on placement and a lot of the placement schools are closer to my home than the uni.
    Its going to be extremely tough- I suspect my house will be a mess and the scant social life I currently have will evaporate! BUT it will be worth it to do a job I love.
    Don't forget too- although the GTP pays a salary it will be taxable. The new TDA bursaries are v generous ( I have a first so will get £9k tax free - secondary shortage subjects are higher again), you can apply to student finance for the usual student loans and as a parent claim some help towards childcare costs. The salary for GTP is only about £15k (I think) so I will actually be better off on PGCE.
    Good luck whatever you decide to do!
  8. I have just noticed that you have a maths degree- you can probably pick and choose courses more than most- I applied for a GTP and was unsuccessful. When I went to the open evening they emphasised the level of competition and then more or less said if you have a maths/physics/chemistry degree and want to teach secondary we'll bite your hand off!!
  9. To 'Shaz' and 'thinkingofteaching', well done for going for it! Please let me know how you find it and get on with the workload. That's very useful to know about 'bite your hand off'. I am thinking of Maths teaching so i'm hoping to go down this route, and that the shortage will work in my favour. But first I really need to get some experience in a school to actually see if i can work with teenagers. I'm planning to get some experience early next year. My kids are currently 2 and 3 but next year it should be easier,
  10. Minimeerkat,
    Thanks alot for your reply. That's very helpful. I agree regarding childcare. DH works from home at the moment twice a week which will also help, and my Mum lives near by but i think i will need to sort out formal childcare to make sure i am covered.
    I think you're right. I think placements are full time, but i'm hoping the rest of it being part-time will take some of the pressure off. But part of me says I should try and do the one year and just get it out of the way. NQT year will be very tough anyway so i'm just delaying the pressure.
    How many hours work do you do on average in the evenings and weekends ?
    Alot of people say you can either be a teacher or you can't. I know i can explain maths one-to-one basis but the thought of controlling a class of teeenagers does scare me, but I guess i'll only know if i do some voluntary TA work ? Is this a career change for you ? What made you decide to train to be a teacher ?
  11. minimeerkat

    minimeerkat New commenter

    I decided after helping out at my children's pre-school/school that it was what I wanted to do, unfortunately I had left school at 16 with no A-levels etc so it has taken me many years (about 10) to actually get a degree. I have been working part time as an LSA for the past 4 years so I am used to being in school.
    I went for the GTP because I would be based near my home at my main school, for me the PGCE was based too much at uni and the logistics would be difficult.
    As for working in the evenings - I have recently completed a 60% teaching block, which I found difficult, I spent some time during a half term break planning and then every evening checking my lesson plans, amending them, making resources etc for the next day. I think I was probably working on average 3 hours a night and at times I felt really under pressure. But I have since been to a 2nd school placement and did approximately the same amount of teaching but didn't seem to spend so long planning, maybe I am getting quicker, or maybe this school was not quite so pressurised. Also I do work at the weekend but I try to have at least one day completely free, which is manageable.
    The support you get from your school is really important as you have seen on this forum some people do not get the help they need. Both schools I have been in have been supportive and my mentor has also been good.
    I did look into the part time route but decided in the end just to 'go for it' and I am glad I did as I am now into my last term and it only seems like yesterday I started the course.
    Good luck
  12. Minimeerkat,
    thanks so much for the info. It's all very interesting. Best of luck with the rest of your course and your teaching career.

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