Below are testimonials from current and previous Initial Teacher Training Students
Steve Eagar – Current ITT Student
If you are considering a career in teaching I would highly recommend choosing a programme with CTSA. As a mature student coming into the programme, I had a lot of apprehension leaving Corporate finance which I had worked in for 18 years, to enter a programme which had its students teaching in front of pupils almost immediately. Even though I had very little teaching experience and absolutely no knowledge on how to create or structure a lesson plan, my mind was soon put at ease. The programme provides its students with informative lectures on a regular basis, as well as the support provided by the program mentors and the staff of the placements schools, allows you to develop and grow as a teacher.
As a student with CTSA, you never feel like you are alone. All the staff from your home school, the placement schools and the program mentors, go out of their way to help you develop your knowledge and confidence. Having the opportunity to work in various schools and observe various key stages also helps you develop many different teaching practices and styles which helps strengthen your teaching practices.
The course, is by no means easy. The work which is hard and hectic at times is the most rewarding thing you could do. I am so happy that I have chosen this program. Although I often feel exhausted by the end of the day, I feel as though I have contributed to society and have made a difference in a child’s excitement about learning and feel great about what I am doing.
For anyone thinking of a career in teaching, I would say CTSA is a fantastic programme to enrol with.
Lee Broomfield – Current ITT Student
Since graduating in 2003 I have worked within the education sector, holding various roles ranging from PE coordinator, cover supervisor, class tutor and lead teaching assistant, predominantly in the Special education sector. I believe these roles have given me a good insight of the role of a teacher, however, I knew there was so much more I had to learn so I could fulfil my ambition of becoming a first class teacher.
I had a few apprehensions about choosing this course of study, mainly to do with my own lack of knowledge of the Catholic family. These apprehensions were quickly quashed when I came for my initial interview. I was made to feel part the schools family straight away and I knew from that day this was the best ITT course for me. I can truly say I feel blessed I was given the opportunity to study with the CTSA.
The expertise of the lectures has proven particularly beneficial for me, seeing as most of my experience has been tutoring and assisting children with Severe Special Educational Needs. The knowledge I have gain from the study days has broaden my teaching skills helping develop my own teaching style. My expertise is fairly unique because my main placement school is complex learning school to cater for my previous experiences. This was set up prior to starting the course by the course tutor and throughout the course she has adapted lectures to include material which will benefit me as well as the other candidates on the course.
Choosing this route into teaching should not be taken lightly, from the start you are straight into teaching, and be it in front of a class delivering lessons, planning, evaluating lessons, marking and being involved in extra curriculum sessions. This said through the hard and sometime exhausting work the sense of achievement and pride you feel when a child discovers they understand something you have been teaching them is amazing.
If you considering a career in teaching I honestly believe there is no better course of study than the CTSA. The support and guidance you will be given is superb and will benefit your career in teaching.
Lorraine Williams – Current ITT Student
If you considering a career in teaching, I would thoroughly recommend training with CTSA. I was fortunate enough to have gained a salaried teacher training position with CTSA. Initially I was apprehensive about how I was going to manage training and coursework with full time teaching. However, my worries were soon alleviated; I have felt well supported in my placement from my appointed school mentor, teaching mentor and PCP mentor. Lesson observations have been constructive and helpful and I am given additional time within the week to plan lessons and complete coursework.
Training has been regularly delivered by a variety of specialist leaders in education with differing teaching styles. This has allowed me to immediately utilise some techniques in the classroom and develop my own teaching style with confidence.
Matthew Smith – CTSA Training Scheme 2014/2015
I have a wealth of experience to draw from due to the CTSA training course, and that’s only after one year in teacher training. Due to the variety in the placements I was sent on, I was allowed to see and fully take in many different ways of teaching. This, along with the mixture of different styles discussed in lectures during the year, is the main strength of the course. Instead of having one or two people employed full time to give lectures, I was given access to a range of different teachers with different backgrounds plus my placements. Having these different teachers on the placements also meant I could take or try different ideas within the classroom.
The lectures themselves were well handled, ably demonstrating necessary teaching practices, teaching styles that could be employed and also building up my knowledge of specific subjects. Communication, even during the many hectic periods that happen during a training year, was good, both between my home school and the CTSA, and between myself and the CTSA. I had the feeling that everything that needed to be handled ‘behind the scenes’ was being handled, despite the inevitable difficulties of coming in and learning to teach at ground level whilst on placement.
Another strength of the course was the flexibility. If I had any issue with certain times or dates to do with the course, I knew that I’d be given leeway to either make the date/time earlier or later to better suit my needs.
Overall, this year has been both a steep learning curve but also one that has been handled and organised well by providers, lecturers and teachers. For me personally, it was the best way to learn how to become a teacher and develop my teaching throughout the year.