Success Stories

We’ve collected feedback from our students to help you get an insight into the course, could you be one of our future testimonials?

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Experienced mentors across our partnership schools will be central to your time in your placement school.

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Success Stories

Sarah Crawford

Qualification: English Literature 2:1 BA (HONS) – Graduated 2010
School/Institution: Leeds Metropolitan University

What subject have you chosen to teach and why?

I chose to teach English as I have always been an avid reader and love the way literature can capture your imagination and challenge your way of thinking. My enthusiasm and passion for English began in childhood and was nurtured and developed during my years of schooling. I became a teacher to be able to share this passion with my students.

What were your reasons for wanting to become a teacher?

I was raised in a family of teachers and had seen first-hand the deep sense of fulfilment that they all felt from performing a role that positively affected the lives of others. I strongly believe that education is empowering and I hoped to join the profession to help guide the youth of today.

What was your background before deciding to teach?

I worked within the recruitment industry, a profession I think I was drawn to because, like teaching, it offers the opportunity to help others. I managed an office in Worksop, looking after 3 other staff and specialising in Commercial recruitment.

Can you summarise your journey from your previous career into teaching?

I had been considering a career in teaching for many years and finally took the plunge in 2017. I attended an information evening at St George’s Academy which was particularly useful and gave me great insight into the application process. I was aware that I needed to gain some experience in schools prior to applying for the training programme so I arranged to spend some time in a number of local schools. These placements only further confirmed my desire to teach and I formally applied in October.

Can you give us an overview of the training?

As a trainee teacher our time is split between university and school. We attend university every Monday and have two sessions. The first, is delivered by the course leader and focuses on the foundations of education and researching education. We learn a great deal about the history of education, policy making and consider different theories. The afternoon sessions focus more on developing our own teaching skills/style and we have looked at things like rules/routines in the classroom, how to differentiate effectively, group work strategies etc. The rest of our week is spent working in our base school. Being fully immersed in school from the first day of term is fantastic. You really feel a part of the team and get to see the reality of life in school. We each have a mentor who works closely with us to provide advice and support. The amount of lessons we teach per week increases per term to ease you in to the timetable of an NQT.

What support do/did you receive / What do/did you enjoy most about the training?

The support received from the partnership and all involved is absolutely impeccable. There are members of the university team who provide academic support for our PGCE, the partnership team who monitor our general wellbeing and deal with any concerns we may have, our day to day mentor, an ITT coordinator at the school … the list is endless. I can’t speak highly enough of all the staff involved in our personal and professional development. It’s one of the reasons I’m so pleased I chose the SCITT programme. The sense of community on the course is absolutely my favourite thing. It’s evident to all the trainees that the staff truly care about our success.

Did you have any concerns/worries before applying to become a teacher?

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous! As I had been working for a good many years I was worried that my subject knowledge in relation to the GCSE specifications would let me down – would it all come back to me?!

I was also very aware that it was going to be an incredibly demanding year trying to train on the job and complete a PGCE but again I would have to say that the partnership take great care to do their all to help us achieve a healthy work/life balance.

What were your main considerations when thinking about changing career?

I had to ensure that it was financially viable for me to become a student again. I was fortunate to be eligible for a bursary which allowed me to comfortably change career.

What would you say to someone who’s considering changing career, but has concerns/doubts?

It is without a doubt the best decision I have made. I think if you’re having concerns (that’s normal!!) it’s best to spend some time in schools and see if it feels the right fit for you. I think you have to go with your gut and don’t be afraid to have a go. It’s an immensely rewarding job.

If you had an access to a bursary what are their benefits of obtaining a bursary?

As mentioned above it would have been very difficult for me to make the change if I weren’t eligible for a bursary. It allows me to live comfortably throughout my training year.

How does your potential career progression as a teacher compare to your previous job/s?

As a manager in my previous role I had reached the limit of where the position could take me. I love that in teaching the opportunities are endless and in the future look forward to exploring the possibility of taking on a pastoral position.

What is it you like most about being a teacher?

The children. They amaze me every day. Seeing a student enjoy and progress within your subject is an amazing feeling.

When did you know teaching was the right career for you?

When I completed my work experience. It came so naturally and I loved working with young people.

Do you have any examples of light bulb moments where you’ve helped a child understand a particular challenging topic? If so can you provide an example?

I am currently studying WW1 poetry with a class of year 9 boys. One student in particular has been struggling to understand how to successfully construct an analytical essay. After spending a great deal of time together in lesson working on this together he finally started to gain confidence. He recently completed a formal assessment and achieved the highest mark in the class. Sharing this news with him at parents evening was a really special moment.

What advice would you give to someone who is thinking of getting into teaching?

It is an incredible profession. It will challenge you in ways you never thought possible but it will change your life for the better.

Entry Requirements