Retraining as a Teacher: A Fairfield High School Teacher’s Perspective

Fairfield High School, Bristol. ©Barbara Evripidou2016; m: 07879443963; barbara@firstavenuephotography.com

If you have ever considered retraining as a teacher you may well be interested to hear that Fairfield High School is currently offering members of the local community the chance to do a one-year PGCE at the school from September 2017.

The opportunity is being organised through the Excalibur Teaching School Alliance in collaboration with Bristol University and Bath Spa University.

Today’s post is one with a difference: a teacher at Fairfield High School explains the reasons why they decided to retrain as a teacher and how they did this.

Before teacher training had you always wanted to be a teacher?

I hadn’t always wanted to be a teacher, from a young child. However, with a mum who was a teacher, I was surrounded by school events outside my own school and so this probably had an impact on my future choice.

What factors made you decide to train to be a teacher?

There were probably a number of factors, not all romantic. I saw it as a ‘safe’ career, when there was so much turbulence in the workplace, thinking people will always need teachers.

It was a good job to fit in with family life as I remember having all my holidays with my mum as she was a teacher. In addition to this, I was a scientist and didn’t want to go to work in an office/lab environment where things are so repetitive and there’s very little variation or spontaneity.

Finally, I loved my subject so much, I didn’t want to go into another career that didn’t continue on from my degree.

What route did you take in your teacher training?

After completing my Biology degree, I then did a PGCE teacher training course in Bristol. Once I’d qualified, I then completed a Masters in Science and Education.

What are the best bits about being a teacher?

Seeing ex-students out and about in the community and hearing them talk about their time at school and how they wish they could go back.

Seeing the pupils faces when they pick up their exam results and you see them realise that they’re heading to the next step of their journey in life.

Constantly being reminded how youth is wasted on the young! The pupils keep you young and they constantly ensure that I never take myself too seriously.

Do you have any advice for Bristol Mum readers who are considering applying to do a PCGE in teaching?

It is a hugely rewarding profession that is unlike any other. The highs are very high and the lows are very low.

I’d say having a close network of friends/family around you is key if you have children and are going to train. Be organised, military style!

This is because in teaching, things always crop up and you need to be able to adapt, so if you plan for every eventuality, you should prevent 50% of the problems.

Why would you recommend doing a PGCE at Fairfield High School in particular?

There is a great sense of family at Fairfield. We do look out for one another and it’s a very friendly place. It is also a very well-balanced school where you will encounter a range of abilities, children, situations, etc. It is a school that will set you up well for any other school.

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If you would like more about the teacher training opportunity please email admintsa@stjohns.wilts.sch.uk or phone 01672 519 555.

You can also find out more information by visiting http://excalibur.org.uk/excalibur-tsa/.

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