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Train to Teach

United Teaching is the teacher training programme for United Learning.

We offer you the opportunity to train while you teach, so you can get the teaching qualifications you need without going back to university. You can train for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) on its own, or you can go for a PGCE as well, earning 60 Masters-level credits along the way.

Training with United Teaching gives you real teaching exposure in a choice of schools across the country. We will support you with subject specialists and dedicated mentors from over 80 of our schools nationwide.

About the Course

We offer an immersive programme starting with a two-week summer school in August. You will then spend your training year in your host school with additional training one afternoon each week. Assessment will continue throughout the course, based on your classroom experience and achievement measured against the Teaching Standards, while your PGCE study will consist of two academic assignments, assessed by Goldsmiths, University of London.

In your NQT year, you will continue to receive training, mentoring and professional development opportunities. Our NQTs benefit from twilight training sessions, mentor visits and additional subject-specific support from the Prince's Teaching Institute.

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The main provision I have received is from the allocation of a mentor with whom I have weekly meetings and the NQT sessions which are also run every week. The NQT sessions at NOA have attempted to cover every aspect of the life of a teacher. We have had sessions on resources and time management, such as using the whiteboard software and managing emails, as well as classroom practise workshops on questioning and designing seating plans. Although this covers a wide range, there is the opportunity to discuss these ideas further with the convenor, head of faculty or your mentor in your next weekly meeting.

I have found the mentor meetings to be a great way to check your progress throughout the year. You have the opportunity to focus on just one target at a time, which you can discuss in a really honest and informal way. My mentor has been brilliant at popping into my lessons and making notes which can act as a focus for next week, or can be the springboard for discussions in our meetings. I get observed more formally by a member of SLT once a term. From these, I get more detailed and target related feedback, and have the opportunity to see how my teaching fits in with the aims and ethos of the school.

-Jonathan White, NQT

I found the training here to be spectacular. Particularly when compared to the experiences of friends at different schools. I have found that the school, department and training program have been so structured, that I found I was teaching my full timetable without really realising I had got there. Mentors have always been ready and willing to help and answer any questions I might have, and help me out with planning any lessons that I might be struggling with. The CPD program has also been useful - both the PDP sessions specifically designed for trainees, as well as the wider school sessions.

-Katherine Graham, PGCE student

My training year at North Oxfordshire Academy has been one of the most useful and challenging of my life. Every day, I've been presented with new situations and issues to overcome, from bad behaviour to outstanding homework, and the staff here have been on side every moment of every day to make sure I have been equipped with the skills and knowledge to deal with them. The support from my department has been phenomenal. There isn’t one member of the team who hasn’t shared their resources, answered my questions, given me advice or offered to show me their way of doing things. As NOA is so focused on staff training and development, I've benefitted from a huge range of training experiences: team teaching, INSET days, workshops, observing outstanding practice and drop-ins with staff. All of these experiences have allowed me to develop and grow as a teacher, learning as I go. I couldn’t’ve asked for a more supportive environment to train in, or a school that encourages staff to set consistently high expectations for themselves and students alike.

-Sara Neal, Schools Direct

I have found that the NQT provision here has been fantastic. I always have the support that I need from both my department and from SLT. The science department particularly has been great, it feels like everyone is my mentor and everyone is always on hand to help. The NQT meetings have been very useful for my teaching and I really feel that I have been invested in as teacher here.

Emma Waller, NQT

I am now halfway through my NQT year at North Oxfordshire Academy. I have found the NQT provision I receive to be the most valuable form of CPD. In weekly NQT meetings we cover a range of subjects - effective marking in line with school policy, behaviour management, effective parents evening meetings and general classroom management, to name a few. These have been very helpful in my development as a teacher. The sessions are often focused around NQT's sharing ideas on a subject, which has been pivotal in establishing the NQT group as a learning community, and has extended to outside of these meetings - often I will ask a NQT for advice on a particular subject, or vice-versa. 

It is also a great comfort to me knowing that my Induction Coordinator (Leanne Mills), is always on hand for advice and discussion on all matters pedagogical, a service I have used on a number of occasions, with consistently positive results. Leanne's approach is always a friendly one, and I feel I can discuss any matter relating to school life with her.

James Stevenson, NQT



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