Teaching apprenticeships continue to open doors for new teachers
Almost 50 teachers have been trained through the 5 Wells Teaching Apprenticeship since the scheme was launched in 2019.
In 2019, 5 Wells Development Centre entered into partnership with London Metropolitan University to become the only provider of the Primary Teaching Apprenticeship in Northamptonshire. This remains the case four years on and in that time, 5 Wells and LMU have trained almost 50 robust and competent Primary practitioners who are ready to ‘hit the ground running’ once they have achieved QTS. Successful Apprentices receive Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and a PG Certificate in Education (PGCE) / Professional Graduate Certificate.
5 Wells was designated as a Teaching School in 2014 and formed strong links with schools across the county for the delivery of quality CPD and school to school support. Following a reduction in funding for the School Direct programme, they began to look at alternative routes into teaching and with the number of young people entering the profession falling via traditional routes, it became vital to innovate. The apprenticeship route seemed the most logical route – both for trainees and the schools investing in upskilling them.
In 2018, the Board of Governors at 5 Wells’ Lead School, made the decision to branch out and become an independent provider of whole school CPD and support and the Development Centre’s success continued to grow.
In 2022, 5 Wells became the training and development arm of Nene Education Trust, based in North Northamptonshire.
Aside from the quality learning experience apprentices receive, a major draw of the apprenticeship route is that it doesn’t cost the apprentice anything to complete their training. School budgets also benefit since the apprentices are employed on the Unqualified Teacher scale.
5 Wells are delighted to welcome new schools to the apprenticeship programme each year. Additionally, many schools link with us regularly to upskill and grow their staffing teams – entrusting their teacher training to us to create the teachers required for their cohort of children and for the context within our county. Some schools with vacancies advertise specifically for ‘Apprentice Teachers’. It makes good financial sense to utilise the Apprenticeship Levy, to which employers contribute, to facilitate this growth.
Sharing knowledge and success
Cross pollination of skills and knowledge across the schools in the cohort has been another advantage of the scheme – for example, a recent cohort had 4 SEN practitioners in their number. One placement school commented that their knowledge of behaviour patterns really added to their context; benefitting children and staff alike.
This mix of practical experience and theory is crucial to the success of the apprenticeship, according to Rob Fonseca, Head of Initial Teacher Education at London Metropolitan University: “The academic work is very successful partly because it is embedded in the practical work that the apprentices are doing every day; their essays and research are more meaningful as a result of their immersion in the specific context.”
‘It has been an exciting and rewarding year.’
The success of the programme means the county’s schools benefits from a cohort of new teachers each year who have a background of a robust training offer and hands on experience.”
London Met’s locally based tutors have secure knowledge of the local education context and are key partners in ensuring pedagogy is taught and reflected on within the context of the diverse challenge that teacher training presents.
The results speak for themselves. From our 2021/22 cohort, 100% of 5 Wells apprentices achieved Qualified Teacher Status and a Postgraduate Certificate in Education. In addition, they all received a Distinction in their End Point Assessment.
We are proud to say that 98% of 5 Wells Teacher Apprentice Graduates are still employed in our county.
Chris Hill, CEO of Nene Education Trust said; ‘We are delighted with the success of this programme and the local impact it is having on schools across the county.’
The work that schools and the university put into ensuring that apprentices succeed is paid off by the fact that they stay in role. Apprentices from previous years are still working within the county and mostly in the schools where they trained; these previous trainees are now starting to work as mentors for new cohorts, bringing their detailed knowledge of the programme. Others are now working in senior leadership roles – a testament to their professionalism and resourcefulness.
The academic work is very successful partly because it is embedded in the practical work that the apprentices are doing every day; their essays and research are more meaningful because of their immersion in the specific context.
The Apprenticeship Route is designed to fit around the school year. Apprentices study for one year, one day a fortnight during term time at the Development Centre. They additionally benefit from training and development at their school. In the first term of the following school year, they complete their End Point Assessment.
Successful Apprentices achieve Qualified Teacher Status and a PG Certificate in Education (PGCE)/Professional Graduate Certificate.
Did you know:
- The 5 Wells Teaching Apprenticeship gives you 60 credits towards a Master’s Degree?
- It provides Quality Assured Mentor training prior to commencement of programme
- Offers a monthly bespoke training for mentors and mentor discussion forum – another USP
- Uses University led formative assessment
- Unlike the School Direct approach, apprentice teachers can learn at their own pace – some experienced HLTAs or TAs are confident leading the whole class from the outset, others build up to it during the year.
- Enables apprentice teachers to earn while they learn
- Gives you access to supplementary training (such as Using Music and PE in your class)
Would you like more information?