Wirral Schools Collaboration (Pensby) Primary (242S)

Postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) with qualified teacher status (QTS)

Accredited body
Liverpool John Moores University
Financial support
Student finance if you’re eligible

A postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) with qualified teacher status (QTS) will allow you to teach in state schools in England and may allow you to teach in other parts of the UK.

It may also allow you to teach overseas, though you should always check what qualifications are needed in the country you’d like to teach in.

Many PGCE courses include credits that count toward a Master’s degree.

Age range
5 to 11
Course length
1 year - full time
Date you can apply from
11 October 2022
Date course starts
August 2023


Course summary

The school based training takes place within our Collaboration Schools that all have a proven track record of high achievement in all areas. The training programme will prepare you to teach across the primary curriculum and covers all areas of the curriculum and associated school processes. Together, the Collaboration and the University will deliver exciting, engaging, meaningful training that will help you develop the professional knowledge and skills to become an effective primary classroom practitioner. Each trainee is assigned a mentor from within their ‘home’ school who will guide them through the training programme. You will be in your ‘home’ school from day one and this will enable you to experience school throughout the academic year. You will be regarded as a member of the teaching team and will attend staff meetings and development days. Being in a school setting means that you can experience the whole spectrum of tasks and processes within a school, such as taking a school assembly, organising class trips, working with other specialist staff etc. Most importantly it will enable you to fully understand how we safeguard our children and prepare them for the next stage of their education. The LJMU taught programme focuses predominantly on developing your subject knowledge and subject pedagogy. Sessions are led by subject experts and are designed to equip students with the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to become confident teachers. In addition, lead lectures and seminars develop student teachers’ confidence in a range of relevant issues; classroom and behaviour management; meeting individual needs and inclusion; planning and assessment etc. There is a strong emphasis on social justice issues in education and on mental health and well-being. Sessions are largely workshop-based and participatory so that theoretical, research-informed teaching is explicitly linked to its practical implications for the classroom. The course, in partnership with Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU), offers a Post Graduate Certificate with Qualified Teaching Status with 60 credits at masters level. The workload of the course requires good organisational skills. Working with your school mentor and supported by the university staff, will enable you to tackle and achieve what you need to do. We want our trainees to succeed, so together we form a strong team to work towards that goal.

School placements

The schools in our Collaboration have a long and established working relationship. There are 12+ schools currently in the Collaboration, mainly situated in the Deeside area of Wirral, but we have Collaboration schools in other areas of Wirral too. We work together in a variety of ways and this joint working and collaboration brings benefits to our staff, pupils, families and of course our trainees. All the schools offer Early Years, Key stage 1 and Key Stage 2 departments. Some of our schools have Nursery provision. This means the age ranges you may teach are 4 to 11 or 3 to 11. The course offers 2 school placements. The main placement, which starts in the autumn term, will be in your ‘home’ school. In the first half of the spring term, you will move to another Collaboration school for your second placement, before returning to your home school to complete the school year. In the autumn term, you spend one day a week at Liverpool John Moores University for training. The remaining four days are spent in your ‘home’ school. In the spring term, you still attend training at the University but this decreases and more full weeks are spent in school. In the summer term you are spending most weeks in the school setting. School based training also happens throughout the year. This will take place in the Collaboration schools and gives you an opportunity to experience many of the schools within our group across Wirral.

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

An undergraduate degree at class 2:2 or above, or equivalent.

Grade 4 (C) or above in English, maths and science, or equivalent qualification.

We’ll consider candidates with pending GCSEs.

We’ll consider candidates who need to take a GCSE equivalency test in English, maths or science.

When considering equivalency tests, we seek advice from Liverpool John Moores University on what is acceptable, Candidates are expected to fund the costs of any equivalency test.

Personal qualities

All schools need people who are dedicated to the children. Our staff must be passionate and enthusiastic about teaching. We want candidates to be eager, who are keen to learn and who can reflect and plan. You must have excellent organisational skills, be punctual and willing to give your own time to the school and it’s pupils.You must be able to reflect on your own practice, accept guidance and accept constructive criticism. Above all you need to be able to guide and drive your own learning, use your initiative and be proactive.

Other requirements

All the schools in our Collaboration are rigorous and determined to safeguard our children. You will undergo an enhanced DBS check. You will be subject to and be expected to adhere to our schools safeguarding procedures at all times, including the staff code of conduct. The safety and well being of the children is paramount.

Fees and financial support

The course fees for 2023 to 2024 are as follows:
Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,250
International students £14,000

The fees for the course are set by Liverpool John Moores University.

About the training provider

The Wirral Schools Collaboration is situated within Wirral and Pensby Primary is the lead school. Our schools have a strong, successful collaboration model based on many years of working together. We work very closely with Stanley Special Primary School and this gives our trainees excellent opportunities to experience Special Educational Needs. Our schools deliver primary education with some schools offering Nursery places, so covering all key stages of primary education. School training is held within your ‘home’ school and we provide additional training delivered by our staff who are experienced and skilled in their field. Together, the Collaboration and the University deliver exciting, engaging, meaningful training that enables the development of the professional knowledge and skills required to become an effective primary practitioner. Each trainee is assigned a mentor within their ‘home’ school. Our mentors are highly experienced. Working closely with the mentors, gives the best opportunity to reflect on your experiences and performance and guide the setting of targets for the next stage of your professional development. Our Collaboration has been training the teachers of the future , through School Direct, for several years. Our success rates and student satisfaction rates are very high (LJMU data). Our schools all have:

  • Positive working environments within supportive cultures,
  • Long lasting history of successful partnerships with Higher Education Institutes,
  • Wonderful children with exceptional behaviour who are eager to learn,
  • A wide range of subject specialisms,
  • Opportunities to work with leading teachers, within highly successful schools,

About the accredited body

Our accredited body, Liverpool John Moores University has an established reputation for high quality Teacher Training. The LJMU Partnership’s 2019 OFSTED inspection outcomes were the best on Merseyside with Primary provision graded Outstanding and Secondary programmes judged to be Good. Our Partnership with LJMU ensures that our teachers develop a deep and research-informed understanding of subjects, the curriculum, learners and learning. The Postgraduate Award from LJMU is co-designed to ensure that teaching and assignments are embedded in classroom practice. There is significant academic and pastoral support from LJMU, whose staff also visit our students and their mentors on placement.

Interview process

The interview process takes place over one day. You will be asked to attend one of the schools in the Collaboration for the morning. On arrival you will be briefed by a senior member of the staff team on expectations and be asked to show your qualifications and identification. You will spend the morning in a class, where you will interact with children and the staff. At break time you will have other opportunities to meet staff. At some point in the morning, you will be asked to work with a small group of children in a directed task. In the afternoon you will be asked to attend a Collaboration school (usually Pensby Primary School, which is the lead school). You will be greeted by a senior member of staff who will welcome you and go through the afternoon events. There will be an opportunity to talk to any current School Direct candidates training in the school. You will write a reflection on your experiences that morning. The final stage is an interview. This lasts about 25 minutes and there is an opportunity for you to ask questions. The panel usually consists of 2 members of staff from one of the Collaboration schools, who are very experienced with the School Direct programme and interview process. The afternoon process is usually complete by 3.30pm. We aim to inform you of the outcome of the day later that afternoon. Feedback is always offered to help support you.

International candidates

You’ll need the right to study in the UK. You already have this if, for example, you:

  • are an Irish citizen
  • have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (you may still be able to apply)
  • have indefinite leave to remain in the UK

If you do not already have the right to study in the UK for the duration of this course, you may need to apply for a Student visa.

To do this, you’ll need to be sponsored by your training provider.

Before you apply for this course, contact us to check Student visa sponsorship is available. If it is, and you get a place on this course, we’ll help you apply for your visa.

Alternatively, check if you’re eligible for a different type of visa, such as a Graduate or Family visa, that allows you to train to be a teacher without being sponsored.

Find out more about training to teach in England.

International qualifications

If your qualifications come from a non-UK institution, we may want to see a ‘statement of comparability’ from UK ENIC. This will show us how they compare to UK qualifications.

You can call Get Into Teaching on 0800 389 2500 for:

  • guidance on the UK equivalents of your qualifications
  • a free statement of comparability once you’ve submitted your application (if we ask you for this)

Training with disabilities and other needs

We seek to support candidates with disabilities and other needs in partnership with LJMU. Our schools have a variety of environments and we allocate a home school to meet needs. E.G. trainees who have young dependents would be placed in a home school closest to their family, or trainees with specific disabilities will be placed in a school setting that can support those needs. Our schools all offer access to a range of medical support, including mental health services. LJMU is committed to Equality of Opportunity. Their Disability Advice Team will help you access the support you need. The best time to contact the Disability Advice Team is before you start your course. By contacting the team before you begin and disclosing your disability, you’ll be able to receive support from when you arrive. Email: disability@ljmu.ac.uk Tel: 0151 231 3164/3165. All trainees are encouraged to disclose any specific learning need that they experience, in order to make any adjustments, both at LJMU and within our Collaboration. As part of the enrolment process to Teacher Training Programmes all students are required to complete a Health Questionnaire and some may be asked to attend a screening appointment with LJMU’s Occupational Health Unit. This is designed to ensure that arrangements are in place, from the outset, to support any students who may need additional support or reasonable adjustments to be made.

Contact this training provider

Greenbank Drive
CH61 5UE

Support and advice

You can speak to a teacher training adviser for free, dedicated advice. They are all experienced teachers who can give you one-to-one support with your application. They can also help you get school experience, and find events where you can speak to training providers and teachers.

Call Get Into Teaching free of charge on 0800 389 2500, or chat online Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm (except public holidays).

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