What's It Like Undertaking Initial Teacher Training Via The Schools Direct Route? By Vincent Murphy

When I started investigating ways to train as a teacher I must admit that I was rather confused by the variety of routes, different courses, different institutions, and so on. However, as I read up on the topic I quickly came to see that some were more university based (such as campus based PGCE courses), and some more school based (such as School Direct courses). Which is wisest is, I think, a very personal choice. 

As a career-change trainee, I realised that I’ve had quite a bit of time working with academic methods and research already, but not so much time in schools. That meant that for me, more time in schools was a particular attraction, especially as both courses I was considering lead to a PGCE. 

I have not regretted choosing the School Direct route. Being in school from the very first week has enabled me to learn a lot about schools, how they work, patterns of student behaviour, how different staff roles relate to each other, and even simple things like how to get resources or use administrative systems. I’m sure I would have learnt lots of that if I was campus based, but perhaps not as soon or in as much depth. 

I’ve also been glad to have longer to get to know my mentor and teaching colleagues in my main placement, building relationships which help create an environment in which I can be given constructive feedback and helped to improve. I know it’s hard to give good feedback to someone you barely know, and so I feel that me having been around longer means people are now more able to guide me - and correct me if needed. 

The other very helpful part of the School Direct route has been getting to know students over a longer period. Being with a tutor group from day one and being in regular classes has meant that, by this point in the course, I’ve had time to start getting to grips with the individual personalities, strengths, and weaknesses of students as individuals - as well as giving them time to get used to me being around. 

If I were to choose again, I think I would choose the School Direct route again. It’s hard to know as people don’t do both to compare - but I know that for me, as someone more inclined to academic study, it’s been really helpful to be in a place where I’m constantly forced to move from theory into practice. 

By Vincent Murphy



Keep up-to-date with the latest Maths Scholarships news:

Find us on TwitterInstagramLinkedInYouTube, and Facebook.

Join our mailing list or get in touch Here.