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Query about secondary to junior teaching transition

Discussion in 'Professional development' started by pythonista, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. pythonista

    pythonista New commenter

    Good evening,

    I'm looking to transition from secondary school to primary (junior) school teaching (8–11 year olds).

    I trained to teach in a college (because salary was much higher), taught in further education for 3 years before moving into secondary school, where I have worked for the past 3+ years.

    I'm now looking to become a KS2 Class Teacher and am thinking about working as teaching assistant for a year to gain experience and insight into the junior school classroom and curriculum.

    I have two questions:
    1. As a qualified teacher (DTLLS + QTLS), am I able to work as a teaching assistant in a junior school without completing an additional qualification?

    2. If I was to secure a TA position, would I be in a position to apply for a KS2 Class Teacher role after a year? Would headteachers see me as a viable candidate for a junior class teacher or prefer to recruit an NQT?
    Considering my career goal (and ignoring the significant salary drop), is this a sensible direction or career suicide? I'd be grateful to hear your thoughts about this. Thanks in advance,

  2. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    'Why do you want to move to primary teaching?' will be the first question any primary school head asks you.

    8-11 year olds is only years 4, 5 and 6 and few schools will guarantee that you can stay in those year groups for ever. Primary teachers can be deployed in whichever year group the head decides is best. How would you feel about moving later?

    To answer your specific questions
    1. Yes, you can, but there are probably better ways to find out the about the curriculum and classroom routines. Supply teaching would be just as good, possibly better, and would pay more.
    2. You could apply for a KS2 classteacher role now, if you wanted to. A year as a TA would strengthen your application, but isn't essential.
    I'm not convinced a headteacher would see you as a viable candidate if there were others. 3 years in college, 3 years in secondary and now primary doesn't give the impression you know what you want to do. What will you want in 3 years time? The age old interview questions of where you see yourself in 5 or 10 years will be key.

    Your success will also depend on your subject specialism.

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