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Teaching assistant with QTS

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by maspo6, Mar 15, 2016.

  1. maspo6

    maspo6 New commenter


    Apologies for the long post but in 2011 I completed my PGCE and gained my QTS. Due to lack of jobs and personal circumstances (my partners job) I ended up moving out of the area where I had been training, lost my network completely and fell into a retail job. This job soon became a requirement and after moving again, I am now in a position where I want to get back in the classroom.

    I understand that it would probably be very difficult to embark on my NQT year after a 5 year break, so I feel it may be best to try and take up a teaching assistant post. This will allow me to regain my confidence in the classroom and get a more consistent view at current practices and the curriculum so that I can then embark on my NQT year when I feel I am back up to speed with the current landscape. There were always rumours that your QTS expired after 5 years but we were always told when training that this was not the case, although it was advised that after 5 years it may be more difficult to go back to teaching as the curriculum and landscape would substantially change in that time.

    The main frustration that I am having is that the recruitment agencies I have contacted so far simply wish to use me for cover supervisor positions which will improve my confidence and behaviour management strategies (although this was also my strong point) but I feel I will not get the long term experience I need to acquire the knowledge to get back in to the classroom. The agencies are also telling me that my PGCE is worthless at the moment because it has almost 'expired' (although I wasn't aware that it could expire!).

    I am really in search of advice or help to see whether this is a silly idea or if it would be possible, and if so, how!

    Thank you all in advance for the help you'll inevitably provide!
  2. Kartoshka

    Kartoshka Established commenter

    QTS does not expire. People sometimes get confused about "the five year rule", which refers to supply teaching in state schools; you are allowed to teach supply for five years after qualifying, without having completed induction. After five years you must complete your NQT year before you can do any more supply work.

    Load of nonsense. Does a BA expire? A BSc? An MSc? Then why would a PGCE? They are all graduate and postgraduate qualifications, awarded as a result of hard work and study. They can't "expire".
  3. Kartoshka

    Kartoshka Established commenter

    Oh, and to answer your question: it is possible for you to work as a teaching assistant, but the difficulty will be to find a role. It is quite a popular job, among those who are not qualified as teachers but want to work with children, and those who are qualified as teachers but don't want the stress/responsibility/workload that goes along with the job.

    As you will no doubt be aware, there are lots of teachers currently leaving the profession and so there are lots of vacancies for cover supervisors, which you are well qualified to do and therefore the agencies are keen to put you in that role.
  4. maspo6

    maspo6 New commenter

    Thanks for your reply, it's really helpful! If it's a competitive market, then I assume getting teaching assistant work through an agency to build up experience will improve my CV and give me a specific edge over the competition? Then hopefully find a more permanent position to develop my knowledge again?
  5. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    Why go through an agency just apply for the jobs as they are advertised. If you can do some voluntary work in a school. Are you primary or secondary?
  6. maspo6

    maspo6 New commenter

    I've had to relocate so an agency seemed like the best option as I have no network or connections and the area I've moved to seems to advertise jobs in the most random places. I was hoping the agency work might get me a foot in the door and hopefully get me some contacts that I start to help build a network from!
  7. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    If you are introduced to a school through an agency then any of those schools employing you have to pay the agency a "finders fee". Take your CV to various local schools tell them you are available. Many schools advertise on their local county web site or even on tes. Another is ETeach.

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