Thinking of teaching?

Routes into teaching

Although there are now hundreds of training providers and different courses from which to choose, an awareness of some basic distinctions can help enormously in deciding what type of programme you want to follow, and clarifying your options. One essential distinction is between fee-paying programmes, on which you are effectively regarded as a trainee, and employment-based salaried routes, on which you assume the role of a regular staff member, with sole responsibility for your own classes, often from the beginning of the school-year. These pages will provide you with general details about each type of programme – but there can be important differences between courses of the same type so you also need to look carefully at the course details for specific providers.

There are two main fee-paying routes into teaching: one described as ‘university-led’ and the other (part of the School Direct programme) as ‘school-led’. Whichever route you choose you will always spend at least two-thirds of your time in school.

There are two different kinds of employment-based, salaried routes into teaching: the national Teach First programme, which requires a minimum commitment of two years, working in a school in challenging circumstances; and the School Direct salaried programme run by many different ‘school-led’ providers.