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What to expect from on the job training

With on the job training, you will obtain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) whilst working as a member of staff in your school. You may also be able to gain a Post Graduate Certificate of Education (PGCE).


Alongside your training programme, you will be teaching. Your timetable won’t be as full as a qualified teacher; this will vary from school to school, but will not exceed 90% of a qualified teacher's timetable.

You will also spend some time gaining experience in another contrasting school environment. This will be arranged by your employer and will probably be at a state maintained school. This may be possible to organise while your main school is closed for the holidays.

Over the year, you will produce some written assignments and build up evidence that you have met the Teaching Standards by keeping a portfolio of your experiences. You will have opportunities to observe other teachers and learn from good practice throughout your school. Some of your lessons will be observed and you will receive feedback to help you develop as a teacher. You will reflect on your own practice and set regular targets with your tutor.


Each school will make its own arrangements regarding training costs and salaries. Some boarding schools may offer accommodation. Most schools will cover the cost of your training and pay a salary.

You will gain valuable teaching experience, learning and training on the job, whilst working towards QTS.

You will have a training mentor in the school to guide you through the process. This person may be a deputy head, head of key stage or head of department, giving you direct access to the expertise of experienced staff. The school will work with an initial teacher training (ITT) provider who will also have tutors overseeing some of your training.

Your teaching, training and whole school experience will ensure you have every opportunity to meet the teaching standards for QTS by the end of the year.

Some schools may offer you an initial post as a teaching assistant or unqualified teacher for a year in order to assess whether to invest in your training the year afterwards. You may wish to ask the schools about your training needs at interview.

What other trainees say

"I can clearly see how much the training process improved my teaching"
Claires Court Junior Boys, Berkshire.

"I was able to take on more responsibility quickly"
Form 1 Tutor at Aysgarth School, Yorkshire.

"I have never learnt so much so quickly, and from such a range of experts"
Teacher at King Edward VI High School For Girls, West Midlands.

To read about the experiences of trainees who have completed QTS training within an independent school, see the trainee case studies.