A new campaign has launched in Leeds to encourage career changers to make the leap into teaching.
The Transition to Teach support programme funded by the Department for Education is primarily designed to help professionals recognise that their skills and experience can really benefit the classroom at any stage of their career.
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Initial Teacher Training (ITT) providers in Leeds can join this ambitious programme by partnering with Cognition Education, as one of the key aims is to support ITT providers in recruiting career changers to raise the quality of teaching and level of education locally to outstanding levels.
For those people in Leeds unfortunately facing redundancy or looking for a change of direction, Transition to Teach also provides light at the end of the tunnel and can open doors to new opportunities.
For many people, teaching is seen as central to greater job satisfaction and tailored to changing lifestyle circumstances.
Latest ONS data reveals that 37 per cent of over-35s are seeking greater work-life balance when considering a career change. In addition, those with young families feel that teaching is better suited to the demands of parenting and family priorities.
Although there is still major demand for teachers across Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), the campaign highlights the need for professionals to teach across all subject areas. For example, those with a passion for music, languages, art or history now have the opportunity to incorporate their hobby or pastime into their job - by making the career-swap into teaching.
The Transition to Teach programme offers support and guidance throughout. It follows a simple four-stage process, with help given to individuals during their application and to assess their eligibility, through to initial teacher training and further support when qualified in the first year of teaching.
Ian Williams, 57, from Holmfirth, has just received an offer from Huddersfield Horizon School Centred Initial Teacher Training and will benefit from the additional support offered through the Transition to Teach programme.
He said: "My experience sits largely within retail businesses where I've held director-level positions. More recently, I've been running my own company, but I've always wanted to do something that makes a difference and gives me a true sense of satisfaction.
“I was craving a change and having been a school governor for a number of years, I felt I could bring my professional experience into the classroom. Being a skilled communicator and mentoring and developing people are transferrable skills that certainly have their place in a school environment."
Mel Sproston, regional director for Cognition Education, added: “Whether a person in Leeds is nearing the end of their career or has a few years’ experience behind them, teaching offers so many positive career and lifestyle benefits. We fundamentally believe that individuals with real-world experience across a wealth of industries, sectors and job roles have so much to bring to the classroom.”
Anyone thinking of making the switch into teaching can start their journey, by simply enquiring online at www.transitiontoteach.co.uk, or by attending the upcoming drop-in evening on Wednesday, April 10, at the Queen's Hotel in Leeds between 4pm-7pm.