Portsmouth Primary SCITT began training graduates to become primary teachers in September 2000. A successful bid was made in that year to the Training and Development Agency for Schools and validation for a Postgraduate Certificate of Education was granted by the University of Portsmouth. At that time there was a shortage of primary teachers in Portsmouth and the programme was seen as a way of training high quality teachers, who would predominantly work within the boundaries of the city. In 2009 we successfully bid for five additional early years places, which has since been increased to seven.
The course is run from our training rooms adjacent to Beacon View Primary Academy, Portsmouth. It is a one year course that qualifies successful primary students to teach children aged 5-11 years in primary, junior and infant schools and early years students to teach children aged 3-7 years in primary, infant and nursery schools.
This is a full-time PGCE course in which 60% of the time is spent in schools and 40% in training centres. You will have the opportunity to observe good teachers at work and be able to work alongside them, gradually developing your own teaching skills. You will receive high quality mentoring, together with support from the SCITT team to enable you to develop into a competent and confident newly qualified teacher.
Portsmouth Primary SCITT Consultants and Advisers, as well as the SCITT team undertake much of the training. This enables excellent continuity for the many trainees who subsequently take up their first teaching appointments in Portsmouth. Now the programme has been running since 2000, many ex-trainees are taking on the role of mentoring new trainees.
The course is offered at both Professional and Postgraduate level (60 M Level credits).
What many of our trainees have found especially motivating is the excitement and stimulation of learning to teach in Portsmouth. Many of them feel it is not just a job. The course helps them grow personally.
The city includes areas of social deprivation, and this means teachers here need high levels of commitment and skill. They have to expect a lot of themselves and of others. Our trainees usually feel that meeting the challenge brings a powerful sense of achievement and reward.
A strong feature of the course is the mutual support that the trainees give one another. The group is usually around 36 in number – a good size for cohesion and diversity. Lasting friendships are made. And what trainees learn about team work serves them well when they graduate to become Newly Qualified Teachers in their first posts.
The majority of our trainees find jobs in the Portsmouth area, but not all. Some people go into Hampshire, some to Sussex and some further afield. There is no requirement to teach in Portsmouth once Newly Qualified Teachers have finished their training.
Category ‘A’ Provider
The first years of the partnership have been highly successful, culminating in 2004 with an OFSTED inspection that made us a Category ‘A’ provider. We have since maintained this status, which is a tribute to the considerable amount of hard work that has gone into creating and maintaining excellent teacher training provision by the whole of the Portsmouth SCITT team.