West Midlands Consortium Primary (5-11) (3XXJ)

Qualified teacher status (QTS)

Financial support
Student finance if you’re eligible

Qualified teacher status (QTS) allows you to teach in state schools in England and may also 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.

Age range
5 to 11
Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
11 October 2022
Date course starts
September 2023


Course summary

This course offers an immersive and inspiring school-centred route into teaching. Associate Teachers (ATs) will be part of a school team from the outset and will receive intensive support from experienced Mentors and their Course Leader. Teaching experiences will prepare ATs for both a Key Stage One and Two focus and opportunities exist to build networks with your fellow ATs. The Primary School Direct (Salaried) Course will prepare ATs for the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) in line with the requirements of the Teachers’ Standards.

All ATs follow a forward-thinking curriculum that focuses on the skills, knowledge and understanding related to effective learning, teaching and pedagogical development within the classroom. Teaching is based on lectures, workshops, skills training and seminars with individual support through one-to-one and group tutorials forming an integral feature of the programme.

We organise the course to provide ATs with an in-depth understanding of a range of teaching, learning and educational experiences to inform both their training and pedagogical development. You will benefit not only from a highly experienced Course Leader who is at the forefront of developments in education but also from the specialist support and expertise of practising teachers and senior leaders.

A blend of practical experience and theory gained during the course is assessed in a number of ways. Teaching knowledge, skills and understanding is monitored through lesson observations, professional learning conversations, reflective journals and progress review meetings together with a number of written reflective assignments that focus on theory into practice and key aspects of pedagogical development.

At WMC, the SDS Primary Programme is tailored to your needs – building on your existing strengths and expertise. We place an emphasis on enabling you to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment as well as academic achievement. A mixture of independent study together with teaching and effective pastoral support enables you to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences which will enable you to flourish and be successful.

The majority of ATs trained through this route are employed by their training school after completing the programme as the nature of this route to Qualified Teacher Status is for schools to train teachers who are committed to the values and ethos of the school and wish to develop their teaching career within the school which invested in their training.

School placements

Associate Teachers will spend most of their time in one placement school where their teaching practice will be supported by a WMC Course Leader and school mentor. Placements will focus on Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2. The AT is employed as an unqualified teacher by their placement school for the duration of the programme.

Associate Teachers are very well-supported during their placements by experienced Mentors within their placement schools and by their Course Leader. As a trainee teacher, you will experience a phased introduction to teaching that will reflect your individual needs. You will spend time observing expert colleagues, supporting group work and sharing classes with the teacher before moving towards independent teaching. As well as teaching, you will be expected to contribute generally to the wider life of the school, becoming an integral part of the school community through, for example, supporting extra-curricular activities.

Placement A carries a 50% teaching commitment with the teaching commitment increasing to 60% within Placement B moving towards a full 5 day placement. Associate Teachers will move towards an 80%, teaching commitment during the summer term which mirrors the commitment and workload of an Early Career Teacher.

ATs also experience a short placement in Key Stage Three which focuses on effective transition from primary to secondary education together with the opportunity to visit a number of specialised settings, for example, SEMH, a special school, ASD provision and supporting pupils with speech and language challenges, to learn more about inclusion.

The majority of ATs trained through this route are employed by the training school after completing the programme. The nature of this route to Qualified Teacher Status is for schools to train teachers who are committed to the values and ethos of the school and wish to develop their teaching career within the school which invested in their training.

The SDS programme is very intensive and you will need to devote an extensive amount of time and effort to developing your teaching knowledge, skills and understanding whilst completing the course. Applicants should be prepared for a very busy but tremendously enjoyable year!

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.

You will need to source equivalency tests in English, Maths and/or Science.

Personal qualities

Applicants must be able to demonstrate an enthusiasm for working with young people, communicate effectively in written and spoken English and be confident in their use of IT skills.

Applicants must recognise that studying to gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) is demanding and requires commitment beyond the standard working day; they will need to be able to manage their time effectively to maintain an appropriate ‘work/life balance’.

Applicants must be able to make the best use of their existing subject knowledge, skills and understanding and be able to accept constructive feedback to support their progress and success throughout the course

Other requirements

It is desirable, although not essential, that applicants have experience of working with young people, preferably within an educational context or through youth organisations.

However, we are actively looking for candidates who have the potential to become effective classroom practioners.

Fees and financial support

The course fees for UK students in 2023 to 2024 are £5,000.

The £5,000 course fee is usually paid by the employing school.

About the training provider

“It has been an absolute pleasure to be a WMC student. The support right from the word go has been relentless and confirmed why I wanted to train through WMC. I have truly been a part of a family and I am sad to go. However, I go knowing that I have been provided with high quality training that is reflected in my standard of teaching. I feel privileged to have been trained by WMC.” WMC Associate Teacher

West Midlands Consortium has effectively and successfully led and managed School Centred Initial Teacher Training Courses (SCITT) for over 20 years. We are a well-established leading provider for teacher training based at Thomas Telford School, the top performing non-selective comprehensive in England.

Our wide range of primary and secondary training courses are highly effective in nurturing the talents of future generations of outstanding teachers and we have a proven track record of high employment, retention and career progression. We strongly believe in fostering reflective, forward-thinking self-assured practioners who are confident in questioning and rationalising their progress and impact.

We pride ourselves on being a small provider with a big reputation. As a West Midlands Consortium Associate Teacher, you will be more than just a number – you will be a member of a select team. You will receive fantastic individualised support from your Course Leader and Mentor and have access to expert advice and guidance from members of the WMC Team and from within our extensive range of Consortium partner schools.

Interview process

After initial selection based on application, successful candidates are invited to an interview where they will participate in a number of activities. Candidates will be interviewed by the Director of the Consortium together with experienced Head Teachers from one of our partner schools.

During the interview process, candidates gain a fuller insight into the nature, content and aims of the course and of the teaching profession. A short presentation will give candidates an outline of the Primary SDS programme with opportunities to ask questions. Prior to interview, candidates will be given a practical task to prepare designed to give a flavour of the type of teacher they wish to become.

One-to-One interviews are held with each applicant during which questions focusing on primary education are explored and discussed. Candidates will be given verbal feedback at the end of the process and are informed of our decision on the day of interview.

Applicants need to demonstrate concern and consideration for the welfare and development of the children, be willing to follow WMC and placement school procedures and liaise with a range of professionals to support pupils.

Applicants will understand the responsibility of acting as a role model through demonstrating professional commitment to the conditions of service for a teacher, recognising the full responsibilities involved, and will have an awareness of the current National Curriculum arrangements for the age range that they will be teaching together with an understanding of the latest developments in education.

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, you may need to apply for a visa. The main visa for fee-paying courses (those that you have to pay for) is the Student visa.

To apply for a Student visa, you’ll need to be sponsored by your training provider.

Sponsorship is not available for this course.

If you need a visa, filter your course search to find courses with visa sponsorship.

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

If you have a disability or other specific need, please contact the WMC Administrator to discuss how we are best able to support with your particular individual requirements.

For more detailed information, please see our Diversity and Equal Opportunities Policy which can be found on the WMC website.

Contact this training provider

01952 200000
Thomas Telford School (Lead School)
Old Park

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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