Once you have been made an offer for Initial Teacher Training with one of our regional partner hubs, you will be assigned to a host school in which you will complete the majority of your training.
In the Autumn term you will spend two days in an alternative phase placement, Primary trainees will experience a Secondary setting and Secondary trainees will visit a Primary school. In the Spring term you will complete a second placement of six weeks, in your chosen phase, in a partnership school which provides a contrast to your host school. This will ensure that you have the opportunity to teach in diverse educational settings which will greatly enhance your learning experience.
Across the training year you will also experience four Intensive Training and Practice weeks (ITP). ITP weeks focus on specific, foundational, and pivotal areas of the training curriculum. They aim to support trainees to develop their understanding of the interplay between evidence-based theory and their classroom practice. The process engages trainees in critical analysis, application of learning to support their classroom practice and provides focused feedback to aid further development.
Elements of the ITP will involve expert input and an introduction to a specific enquiry question which will underpin: trainees’ observations of colleagues in placement schools; an action-research project; and the development of their classroom expertise.
Trainees will be supported by expert colleagues and mentors to understand exactly what it is that makes this practice effective and to think about how it could be embedded in their own teaching.
Trainees will then have the opportunity to apply what they have learned through discussion, low-stakes rehearsal and live practice, and through receiving constructive feedback from their mentor to support their development in this area of their practice.
Intensive Training and Practice weeks will be based on the following curriculum strands with a focussed enquiry question for each.
- Behaviour Management and Expectations
- Adaptive Teaching
- Concepts in Assessment
- Subject and Curriculum
Our training is centred around a centre-based training curriculum informed by the most up to date educational research delivering all aspects of the ITT Core Content Framework.
The centre-based training curriculum is delivered via weekly face-to-face sessions at your regional centre and is closely linked to your practice in schools. Together, the two elements of the programme will support you to successfully master the skills required across all eight Teacher's Standards by the end of your training year.
Regular check-ins with your mentor and your local training hub team will help to monitor your progress and provide guidance to ensure you are able to put the knowledge gained, and theoretical concepts learnt, into practice within your classroom. This ongoing assessment process, which is closely linked to the centre-based training programme, will enable you to set appropriate targets, supporting the development of your teaching both in terms of your confidence and skills. There are several 'point in time' assessments and two in-depth assessment points during the year, which take place during the Spring and Summer terms and feedback from your assessor helps to shape your individual training plan.
We strongly recommend that all our trainees enhance their training year by choosing the PGCE uplift which will include additional sessions with our university partner which are included as part of the centre-based programme.
One of the most important elements of the IFT programme is the level of support you will receive across the training year both from your central hub team and the staff in your placement schools.
In both school placements you will have an Expert Mentor who has a thorough understanding of all aspects of our curriculum, the research that underpins it and the school based experience needed to reinforce your learning. Your mentor will work with you on a weekly basis to help you unpick your classroom practice and set targets to drive your development.
You will also have a Professional Tutor (PT) in your school settings, this is often a member of the school senior leadership team, the PT is responsible for overseeing the work of the mentors and will be available to all the trainees in their school to offer additional support and guidance.
At IFT we recognise the importance exploring the core themes of our curriculum more deeply with your subject/phase in mind.
Secondary trainees will have access to a Lead Subject Mentor who has been identified as an expert practitioner in their field. These Lead Subject mentors co-ordinate a programme of workshops delivered through a subject specific lens, this is interwoven into the Professional Studies calendar.
For Primary trainees we have a team of curriculum specialists who will support you to explore all the subject areas you will need to be equipped to teach. We do this through a combination of face to face sessions, investigative projects undertaken in your school settings and supported classroom practice.
We also offer trainees access to wellbeing support - your work-life balance and personal wellbeing are our priority and we are dedicated to providing advice and support to help you, not only to get through your training year, but to be fully prepared for life as a qualified teacher.
In addition to the staff supporting you in your schools, all trainees will be supported by their local hub teams who have a wealth of experience in the delivery of school based training programmes. We understand that every trainee is different and our programme allows the flexibility to adapt to individual needs and circumstances to ensure you reach your full potential.
Finally, one of the greatest sources of support during your IFT training year will be your fellow trainees. You will come together as a cohort at the weekly centre-based sessions and will have the opportunity to share your high's and low's and to learn from each other.