Orwell Education Alliance Primary (39SF)

PGCE with QTS full time

Accredited body
Colchester Teacher Training Consortium
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
Date you can apply from
12 October 2021
Date course starts
September 2022


About the course

Our Primary School Direct Programme (Tuition) offers high quality training, leading to the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE), including credits at Masters level, validated by the University of Greenwich.

The course is 37 weeks long and combines practical teaching with professional training. It has been designed to give Trainee Teachers the necessary learning opportunities and support to enable them to demonstrate they have developed the knowledge, skills and behaviours to meet the Teachers’ Standards for QTS. There are built-in assessment structures which help Trainees track their progression throughout the CTTC curriculum. This curriculum is centred around 4 key values: CREATIVITY, TARGETED INTERVENTION, THINKING CRITICALLY ANDCOLLABORATION and ensures trainees have full access to their entitlement under the Initial Teacher Training Core Content Framework. The training consists of placements within two schools across opposite key stages, along with centre-based training sessions. There is also the opportunity to gain experience within SEND, secondary and nursery settings.

During the first half of the Autumn term the Trainee gains experience of their Host Placement Class whilst also spending time in other classes and age groups within this setting. In the second half of the Autumn Term, the Trainee will be in school for ten consecutive days when they will be expected to teach whole class lessons. After some preparation and planning time at the end of the Autumn Term, the Trainee Teacher will undertake a five week block practice in their Twin Placement School in the Spring Term, teaching 50% of the timetable. In the Summer Term the Trainee will teach 80% of the timetable during their eight-week block practice.

The Trainee Teacher will receive support and guidance from their personal Mentor, Training Manager, Lead Practitioners and the Course Director drawn from the Orwell Education Alliance and Colchester Consortium as appropriate. The Training Manager is the Trainee’s line manager and oversees them throughout the year. The personal Mentor is an experienced member of the school.

School placements

Orwell Education Alliance has strong connections with a variety of schools in communities with differing needs and we ensure that all our placements are high standard and trainees are supported as well as challenged. Trainees are supported by school mentors who are enthusiastic, committed and well-trained individuals to ensure that they are well equipped for the role. We will determine placements in discussion with the trainee to accommodate the specific aspirations and development needs and during placements there is added support from the Training co-ordinator to ensure the goals of the placement are being met.

Trainees spend approximately 26 weeks on school placement. Most of this is in the main placement school in the autumn and summer terms, with at least 6 weeks in the spring term in a contrasting school.

The distance to school placements will vary. These take into account the trainee’s home address, whether they have their own transport and the placement that the school is able to offer. Our policy is to endeavour to keep journey times to school to a maximum of 50 minutes each way.

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

An undergraduate degree, 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.

Personal qualities

Teaching is a demanding but very satisfying career and we are interested in people who are passionate about children’s learning with a desire to open up minds to new possibilities. You will need to be willing to listen, respond to challenge, be organised and self-motivated - there is lots of support but you will need to be committed to the task throughout the training year. We have worked successfully with many trainees and, with the right mind set, we believe committed trainees can develop in to great teachers.

Other requirements

Safeguarding Orwell Education Alliance is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff, trainees and volunteers to share this commitment. All successful applicants for teacher training will be required to undertake an enhanced check by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

School Experience is no longer a statutory requirement to apply for ITT, as we are looking for the potential to train to teach. However, if you apply to us and are interviewed, we would be happy to arrange an in school experience for you.

Fees and financial support

The course fees for 2022 to 2023 are as follows:
Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,000
International students £9,000

About the training provider

The Orwell Education Alliance’s constituent schools have been training teachers for many years as we have always believed in the importance of using our skilled practitioners to develop the next generation of teachers. We are proud of our track record in producing consistently good and outstanding teachers who often progress rapidly to becoming excellent classroom practitioners, move into positions of leadership or added responsibility. We have an established process that takes our trainees through an induction and training programme including detailed mentor meetings, and placement in a year group team. Key to our success has been consistent high expectations backed by the expertise of our mentors who are outstanding practitioners able to challenge and coach trainees to a high standard. We *will* challenge you but with that will come close support to help you develop the depth of skill and practical experience needed to become an outstanding teacher.

We have excellent contacts with other schools, training partners and organisations that allow development tailored to your needs and ambitions. We are proud to be the Ipswich Hub for the outstanding Colchester Teacher Training Consortium who share our ideals and goals to provide an excellent ITT experience that equips our trainees with the skills and knowledge for a rewarding career in education.

A recent quote from a Training partner: “Feedback from our trainees and colleagues has been exceptional about the overall experience and the confidence they have gained from being in your school”

For further information, email orwellea@omat.org.uk or ring 01473 683932.

Interview process

We invite short-listed applicants to participate in a selection process involving the following:

  • Teaching a lesson
  • Written task
  • Maths task
  • Interview

We ask all interviewees to teach a lesson to a small group of children, the topic of which will be chosen by the candidate.

Applicants will then be asked to complete a written task (handwritten), which offers the opportunity to reflect accurately on the teaching activity’s strengths along with areas for development. This also gives the opportunity for applicants to demonstrate they can communicate in writing, accurately and effectively.

The interview will last for approximately 40 minutes and will include a 10 minute presentation on a hobby or skill the applicant is passionate about and how this relates to teaching and learning. Questions will be framed around the applicant’s previous relevant experience, skills, knowledge of the curriculum and aptitude for becoming a teacher of the future.

International students

We cannot sponsor visas. You’ll need to get the right visa or status to study in the UK.

You do not need a visa if you already have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, or if you’re an Irish citizen.

Candidates with qualifications from non-UK institutions may need to provide evidence of comparability by applying for a UK ENIC statement.

Training with disabilities and other needs

We are committed to supporting trainees with disabilities and other needs, so please let us know if you would like us to make any adjustments to support you during the application, interview process and throughout your programme.

Bespoke support is provided for trainees with a variety of needs. Examples include:

  • Personal tutor for the PGCE
  • Resources to allow easier access on computer applications if required
  • Expert pastoral care

Contact this training provider

Orwell Education Alliance
Prince of Wales Drive

Support and advice

For support and advice, you can speak to a Get Into Teaching adviser for free. They’re all experienced teachers who can help you to prepare your application, book school experience, and access exclusive teaching events.

You can also call Get Into Teaching free of charge on 0800 389 2500, or speak to an adviser using their online chat service Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5pm (except public holidays).

Find out about the different ways to train if you do not have a degree, or are already an experienced teacher.

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