Director of Sixth Form, Deyes High School
Why did you decide to be a teacher?
Teaching was a profession that interested me from an early age. I grew up knowing that it was a profession that would offer me huge job satisfaction and the opportunity to have an impact on the lives of others. Whilst at secondary school, I also developed a love of History and as I progressed through my school career, it became clear that teaching was the perfect way to engage with History every day and vehicle to inspire and engage others about the past.
I chose to enter the teaching profession straight after my degree. Whilst I wanted to pursue teaching, the traditional PGCE route did not enthuse me, due to large amount of time spent in university. In comparison the SCITT course combined the lecture-based learning with more workplace-based learning. I loved the idea of being in a department from Day 1 and believed this would accelerate my learning and skill set more.
Why did you choose AMP SCITT for your ITT?
I attended Deyes High School on a School Experience Visit. During my visit I met Alison Brady (Head of AMP SCITT) who was warm and welcoming. Alison provided me with a real insight into what the SCITT could offer and the benefits of a SCITT route into Teaching.
Why appeals about teaching your specialist subject?
As History teachers we are not only imparting knowledge about the past. We are allowing students to develop their own opinions about our history, through empathy and understanding. I have loved seeing my students develop into critical thinkers, who can challenge and support the past and the world around them. As History teachers, we gift them the skills and confidence to this.
What did you enjoy most about the course and how supportive were the staff?
The most enjoyable part of the course was the time spent in school, on placement. The way the SCITT course is designed, you are treated like an ordinary member of staff. This meant you were fully immersed in school life. You were able to build relationships with the staff and students and get a real insight into what teaching was like.
The two departments I was placed in were brilliant. Both teams provided me with guidance, support and further opportunities during my placements. I met regularly with my Home Coach, who really helped to develop my practice further. Specific and bespoke targets were set every week, to ensure I developed as many skills as possible. The SCITT staff were incredibly supportive too. At all levels, the SCITT team would always find time to listen and support in whatever way they could. I received a variety of support from job application support to pastoral and well-being advice. What made AMP SCITT different, was the personal nature of the programme. The team knew you and the genuinely cared about you and your progression across the year. This was key in my success across my Trainee year.
How has your career progressed since you graduated?
Since graduating, I have been fortunate to have gained a number of different opportunities. In 2017, I took on two roles within AMP SCITT, as Home Coach for the History Trainees at Deyes High School and the role of History Expert Practitioner. Both roles allowed me an opportunity to work with and coach new trainees but also stay engaged and up to date with key curriculum developments within History.
In 2018, I was promoted to Head of Year 12 and 13. This took my career in a slightly different direction, as it was primarily a pastoral role. This role was incredibly rewarding. It was a role that I genuinely loved doing and one I was able to flourish in. In 2021, I was promoted to Director of Sixth Form. In my current role I am responsible for the Sixth Form provision at Deyes High School.
What do you love most about your job?
I love my job! The students I work with every day, make me love my job. Teaching is an incredibly rewarding career, where you can see the positive impact you are having, on a daily basis.
What are your planned next steps/long-term career goals?
My long-term ambition is to make the step up into Senior Leadership, as an Assistant Headteacher.
What advice would you give other ITT trainees on career progression?
Do not automatically dismiss an opportunity because it was not the opportunity you thought you would take. Sometimes opportunities appear that we were not expecting but can actually turn out to be something you enjoy and want to pursue further.