The OAKS Suffolk English course is open to Trainee Teachers from a wide variety of backgrounds. You may be a recent graduate in English (or in a degree with a substantial element of English Literature and/or Language – minimum of 40% of your degree) or you may have worked in a range of occupations prior to commencing the course which will have provided you with an opportunity to develop your subject knowledge and wider experience of education and work. Whatever your background, you will have a love of language and an enthusiasm for literature and a passion for conveying this to pupils and students.
English is a core subject but that apart, it is a multifaceted, fascinating and potentially contentious subject which allows considerable scope for the autonomy and personal qualities of the individual teacher. These facts are recognised in the course which encourages you to question the nature of the subject, to explore priorities and to develop constructive means for meeting the needs and interests of your pupils. You will consider the results of recent and relevant research and meet tried and tested teaching and learning strategies and programmes but, as importantly, you will be encouraged to develop your own ideas and strategies. Themes and sessions include:
English in the Classroom
Approaches to poetry
Teaching ‘unseen’ texts for GCSE English Language
Approaches to Writing and Assessing Writing
Writing schemes of learning for a class text
While the course aims to help you meet the Standards which qualify you to teach, it also has wider horizons which encompass the Induction (Early Career Teacher) Year and the early years of teaching. Many of our ex-Trainee Teachers progress rapidly through the profession so we provide you with an appropriate foundation in knowledge, skills and understanding for meeting the teaching, administrative and management demands which lie ahead.
These sessions are delivered by English Subject Experts in Schools.
To sum up, the course aims to help you become a competent, professional and, above all, creative teacher, capable of developing the imaginations and abilities of the young people with whom you have the privilege of working
We will send you to two secondary schools where you will receive an 11-16 experience; the time spent in both of these placements is the same. Hopefully they will give you two very different experiences. We make sure that you also receive a pre and post phase enhancement so you will be placed in a primary school for one week and gain experience in a post-16 environment (possibly in one of your secondary placements). We are very proud of our alternative education placements that we arrange for you on our programme. Hopefully you will gain experience in an EAL school, pupil referral unit (PRU), special school and maybe an independent school.
Travel to and from your placements is always a key concern and we make every effort to make sure that you can easily commute to your schools. We guarantee that you will never have to travel more than 75 minutes. In fact, most of our trainees travel well under an hour to their teaching experiences, with many training in the town they live.
We train and then monitor all of our school based mentors and the quality of our school’s provision annually; so rest assured that you will have a good teaching experience with us at the OAKS.
You can select one of the following locations when you apply.
List of locations and vacancies
Hadleigh High School
Highlands Road, Hadleigh, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP7 5HU
Ormiston Endeavour Academy
Defoe Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 6SG
Ormiston Sudbury Academy
Tudor Road, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 1NW
Stoke High School
Maidenhall Approach, Ipswich , Suffolk, IP2 8PL
Stour Valley Community School
Cavendish Road, Clare, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 8PJ
Stowupland High School
Church Road, Stowupland, Suffolk, IP14 4BQ
An undergraduate degree at class 2:2 or above, or equivalent.
Your degree subject should be in English or a similar subject. Otherwise you’ll need to prove your subject knowledge in some other way.
Grade 4 (C) or above in English and maths, or equivalent qualification.
We’ll consider candidates with pending GCSEs.
We’ll consider candidates who need to take a GCSE equivalency test in English or maths.
Passes at GCSE in English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above (or recognised equivalent)
Highly motivated individuals who want to make a positive contribution to the education of young people.
Trainees who are passionate about their own specialism subject, with very good subject knowledge.
Who are able to inspire their learners and create an environment where everyone wants to succeed.
Candidates that show enthusiasm and a willingness to participate in the all aspects of the training course.
Robust, resilient applicants who want to make a difference in the classroom.
People who want to become good or outstanding classroom practitioners, with a desire to improve themselves and their student’s.
a medical report which is deemed satisfactory;
a completed DBS enhanced disclosure which is deemed satisfactory by the The OAKS;
a successful completion of a minimum of 10 days teaching experience in a secondary school/college during the last two years. This could be either before or after selection (undertaking this before the selection process commences will strengthen your application).
Fees and financial support
The course fees for UK students in 2022 to 2023 are £9,250.
With The OAKS there is a pre-course fee which covers
Enhanced DBS check
Fitness to teach
Purchasing of Bristol Guide (reduced cost from The OAKS)
In 2020/1 the total price for the above was £115, at this moment in time we are unable to confirm the price for 2022/23, but do not foresee this increasing dramatically.
About the training provider
The OAKS Suffolk is based at Ormiston Sudbury Academy in Sudbury, Suffolk and is steered by a collaborative working partnership between a number of schools in Sudbury, Clare, Ipswich, Hadleigh and Stowmarket. The schools have a combined wealth of experience and an excellent local reputation for supporting teacher training of the highest quality. This new venture acting as a hub for the Outstanding and widely respected OAKS SCITT based at Keele University, will ensure a highly personalised and rewarding pathway through initial teacher training.
Trainees will be placed in one of the schools in Suffolk, enabling them to benefit from the experience of the OAKs Suffolk tutors and the OAKs team based at Keele University. We also strive to create great recruitment and further professional development opportunities at the end of the training year.
Our aim is to ensure that trainees come into the profession with a high level of readiness to change lives in our local schools and act as part of the solution to the challenging recruitment picture in the area. With this in mind we will ensure there are many support structures in place for this challenging but very rewarding course to enable you to successfully gain QTS and a PGCE(m) Academic Award.
About the accredited body
The OAKS is an Ofsted Outstanding (2016) and innovative SCITT (School Centred Initial Teacher Training programme) which links Keele University and OAT (Ormiston Academies Trust) with a long established partnership of schools in various hubs across the UK.
It is an innovative and intensive one year course during which trainees will complete both the Teaching Standards, gaining QTS certification and obtain a Keele University PGCE academic award at either level 6 or 7.
The course is both supportive and enjoyable, with Outstanding success rates well above the national average for the Initial Teacher Training sector.
Our selection process is a two way process where you can find out if the OAKS is the training programme for you and we can decide if you can potentially become a good/outstanding secondary teacher. We always carry out our interviews in one of our partnership schools, where you will be expected to teach either a class or a small group of their students for 15 minutes. The students give us feedback on your lesson, which we share with you during a formal interview. This focuses on your lesson, your subject knowledge and your commitment to teach. There are also several tasks for you to complete; these include a written subject specific activity, trial skills tests (unless you have already passed your literacy/numeracy) and a generic writing task. The whole process should take no more than half a day at the school. You are interviewed by Partnership School staff and OAKS tutors, who will talk through the programme and school placements. There will always be plenty of time for you to ask questions and the decision as to whether you are accepted on to the course is usually made on the same day (this may vary depending on the subject/time of year).
We want the interview to be a very positive experience for you; please arrive promptly and formal dress is expected. We look forward to meeting you!
You’ll need the right to study in the UK. You already have this if, for example, you:
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 have a dedicated support tutor, who supports our trainees with disability or any other need. It is important to state that they do not assess your teaching performance, this gives you the opportunity to speak honestly about your needs, but also enables the support tutor to have the freedom to help you and visit you; whether you are in placement school or here at The OAKS. This includes signposting through to developing individualised learning plans which may extend beyond the course date to enable you to successfully complete the programme.
For support and advice, you can speak to a teacher training 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
Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm (except public holidays).
Find out about the different
ways to train
if you do not have a degree, or are already an experienced teacher.