As the SFE SCITT Programme closes, Education Adviser Lucie Welch reflects on reaching the end of one chapter, and celebrates the beginning of an exciting new one.
In School Support, we strive to reach our offer into all areas of teaching and learning; from staff training to safeguarding, to school improvement and for the last few years, Teacher Training.
The team have facilitated both the Graduate Teacher Programme (GTP) and more recently the School-Centred Initial Teacher Training programme (SCITT) as a means of training the primary school teachers of the future.
These routes to teaching have involved trainees being fully immersed in the day-to-day routines of a primary school, observing and learning from experienced practitioners and attending taught sessions to build up their own skills and knowledge in preparation to take on a class of their own.
Lockdown proved for many parents, that being a teacher…. is not easy.
There were sudden offers of wine and chocolates and pay rises for teachers from distraught home-schooling parents nationwide -upon realising just how tough it is to get children to learn. Despite these challenges and those highlighted in the media, in September 2021, SFE took on another batch of eager and dedicated trainees, ready to mould, prepare and train for life at the chalk face.
As a teacher, who has only recently stepped back from the interactive whiteboard, I know first-hand the hard work our trainees have achieved to get to this point and the amazing adventures that lie ahead in their new teaching careers.
Upon joining SFE, I didn’t know that SCITT would be part of my role or that I would be overseeing the programme once our colleague Tricia returned to Headship, but I couldn’t be more glad to have played a significant part in developing these individuals into the great teachers they are today.
I am so proud of how they have developed and know that they are ready for whatever life (or the children) might throw at them. This year-long journey has not been without tears, tantrums and many, many late nights- but this cohort of trainees has shown true grit, determination and an abundance of positivity as they have worked their way through a range of classes, settings, abilities and some pretty tricky behaviour.
Throughout this unknown, unsettled and sometimes chaotic post-covid world, they have each developed into approachable, knowledgeable and well-rounded teachers, and any school would be lucky to have them on their staff. I wish each and every one of them the greatest success as they embark on their journeys into the world’s greatest profession, and I hope they will one day look back, think of their time with SFE and see just how far they have come.
This group of trainees is not only a special one due to their motivation and drive, but due to the fact that they will be the final cohort to train at Services for Education.
Over the past few years, SFE has trained over 100 primary school teachers- who are now teaching and making a difference throughout the West Midlands and beyond.
The decision to close the SCITT programme was not one taken lightly but – fear not- it does not signify the end for Services For Education working with and supporting new teachers, as from September 2022, School Support will continue to make our mark and share our knowledge by facilitating the Early Career Framework (ECF) on behalf of the Best Practice Network.
This amazing opportunity will allow members of the School Support team to continue working with new teachers and therefore continuing to make a difference in the lives of Birmingham’s children and young people.
I am proud to have been part of SFE’s teacher training journey, not just to have seen the trainees flourish, but to have built relationships with some excellent schools and their amazing staff, to have seen just how incredibly schools have bounced back from a world we never could have imagined.
I have been proud to carry the flag (and the business cards) for Services for Education and cannot wait to embark on the next part of our journey in the School Support team.
Congratulations to Adam, Adrienne, Afsana, Alexandra, Hollie, Leigh, Nedime, Rob, Sara, Sharondeep, Shibly, Skye and Yazmin – the class of 2022.
We wish you every success for the future.