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Jayne Woodbury

Abstract

In recent years in England there has been a move away from Initial Teacher Training (ITT) taking place predominantly in Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to becoming schools led. The two main routes undertaken by graduates wishing to teach are the Post Graduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) and Schools Direct (SD). Both routes offer opportunities to spend time in more than one school. A small case study was undertaken in one HEI to compare and contrast these routes in the light of government policy initiatives and reforms towards increasingly school-led ITT. Seven main themes emerged from the data collected: recruitment, placement, growing your own, support and mentoring, facilities and research, peer groups and communities of practice and reflection. Both routes offer benefits to both trainee and provider and both offer the opportunity to spend an extended time in placement schools. However, there is a danger that the underlying pedagogical understanding of teaching and learning could be lost if the push towards schools led ITT is maintained and HEIs continue to withdraw from teacher education.

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