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Bradford College

6 things you need to know about a career in teaching in Further Education

If you’re interested in a career in teaching young people and adults, then a career move into teaching in Further Education (FE) might be for you.

headshot image of our staff member katya kitchingman

There are over 381 FE colleges in the UK, teaching courses from social care to construction. The subjects taught at each College are often developed, accredited and launched to reflect the needs of the local community and economy.

FE teachers could be delivering courses at a multitude of levels from GCSE’s, T-Levels, BTECs, apprenticeships to entry level courses.

Katya Kitchingman, Programme Lead for Post-Secondary Education and Training and Certificate in Education and Training at the Margaret McMillan School of Education at Bradford College, shares six things you may not have thought about, if you are looking for a career in teaching in Further Education.

1. Generous bursaries (up to 26k) are available in some subject shortage areas

Areas such as English and English for Speakers Of other Languages (ESOL), Maths, Science, Engineering, Computing and IT and Special Educational Needs and Disabilities are classed as subject shortage areas.

Regardless, all trainee teachers (without a teaching qualification) are eligible for Student Finance to support their studies.

2. Further Education is an extremely dynamic and diverse sector

There are many types of colleges and settings you can go into, including general colleges, sixth form colleges, special educational needs provisions and prison services. Colleges offer a wide range of courses, both vocational and academic, and you may be teaching full time and part-time students. Further Education is often skills-based, so the curriculum has to adapt to ensure learners have the right skills and competences to meet their chosen industry needs, now and in the future. To teach successfully in FE, you’ll need skills, knowledge and experience in your subject area as well as industry experience.

a group of teaching students sat at a desk

3. Understanding that all human beings have unique strengths and talents which previous formal education may not have successfully unearthed

One of the most important roles of an FE teacher is to make the conditions right for an individual’s talents to shine. Perhaps you may have had challenges and hurdles to overcome in your own education? In that case, you are well suited to help FE students to overcome theirs.

4. Further Education often allows teachers and students more creative freedom

The College environment allows learners more freedom, flexibility and therefore creativity. Students have the opportunity to develop relevant skills and knowledge directly aligned with their motivations and future careers. They are making decisions about their future and therefore are encouraged to study their subject choices in more depth.

5. Further Education is a powerful tool for social equity and social mobility

FE learning environments are tailored to the subject choices of the learners, therefore often suiting their preferences more than traditional classrooms. When students choose to progress in their studies, it’s because they want to learn important skills and trades, study apprenticeships, develop their professional careers or develop academic skills leading to further study in Higher Education and degrees. When working in Teaching in FE, it is immensely rewarding to support young people and adults on this journey!

6. Many notable, gifted people found and developed their talents studying at their local community college

Community colleges are a popular route for young people as it allows progression to HE and beyond. Could you be the one to discover the next David Hockney, the next Neil Bedford or the next Nicola Adams?

Our Postgraduate Diploma in Education and Training and Certificate in Education and Training are full teaching qualifications for further education and skills. To talk to a member of the team, visit one of our open days or get in touch for an informal discussion about how to start your journey with us.

Following a recent inspection, Bradford College is proud to celebrate Ofsted ‘Good’ rating for our Teaching Training provision which is one of the largest Initial Teacher Education (ITE) providers in the North East, Yorkshire and Humber. This is the second highest possible grading which has awarded all areas of Primary, Secondary and Further Education & Skills teacher training as ‘Good’, including quality, leadership and management.

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