Teaching Futures

Teaching Futures Salaried School Direct Teacher Training course for career changers

About the course

The Teaching Futures course is a specialist career-changer only salaried route for people that are different, feel different or can make a difference. Teaching Futures is part of Lighting up Learning, a specialist group of teaching professionals focused on changing the way people think about leading and learning.

Career-changers are people who have worked continuously for at least three years and do not hold a UK teaching qualification. It is a highly practical route very much focused on practice-based training in schools from the end of August to end of June, although those trainees offered jobs are expected to work until the end of the academic year.

Our course is Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) only route without PGCE (although this is an option).

Having personal experience of being career-changers we understand the implications of leaving an existing profession. Our course is tailored to up-skill trainees quickly and assumes participants have no teaching experience however, previous experience of being in schools is required.

We are committed to diversifying the next generation of role models, teachers and leaders entering the profession from groups such as BME and men in Primary.

Trainees spend Fridays in our training space or different settings around Bristol such as museums or sports centres, receiving training from specialists. Monday to Thursday, trainees are in one school and one classroom for the majority of the year, aiming to become the class teacher before Easter at the latest. There is a short placement in another setting usually during Term 3, although this is very much dictated by the needs of the trainee and schools.

Many of our partner schools use Curious-city, a localised, enquiry-led version of the National Curriculum. We use our Curious-city partnerships and specialists across the region to deliver a distinct, unique and practical experience.

Schools looking to appoint Teaching Futures Salaried School Direct trainees are interested in growing their own teachers. Being trained in Curious-city, mastery-led learning and cognitive development means our trainees are in prime position to gain posts as Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs) on successfully obtaining QTS. It also means our relationship with trainees continues into their NQT year.

Our entire programme, from developing subject knowledge to mentoring is delivered by practicing teachers/headteachers. We are a satellite of the CLF Institute, we have chosen to work together as they are dedicated to creating confident, skilled professionals and we are pedagogically aligned. Whilst the Teaching Futures course is distinct, trainees will have many opportunities to meet and work with participants from other courses.

Anyone interested in becoming a Teaching Futures trainee must attend an information evening, by emailing: info@lightinguplearning.com

The Interview process

The selection process is two fold. Initially, after attending an information evening, having had some experience in primary schools and applying via UCAS, we invite the potential trainee to join us for a one to one discussion with members of the team and potentially a Senior Leader of the school/group of schools you may be working in if successful. It is not a formal interview with teaching tasks as such; we want to ensure that trainees are right type of person for our course.

As a small cohort of only 12 career-changers, the group becomes very close and we have to ensure the potential trainee is not only the right person for the course, but for the team and more importantly, for our schools. The more we get to know each candidate in the initial interview stage the better we can match them to the schools we have.

The second stage is a school suitability one, and can be several weeks after the initial interview. After matching the trainee to a school, the trainee and Programme Leader meet the Headteacher for an interview. Whilst formal, this again is more about suitability than knowledge of the education system. There will be an activity involving children which will be observed. This is likely to be a reading or group work activity and is simply there to gauge how the trainee interacts with children of that school.

How school placements work

As this is a salaried route, you will be employed by one school and spend the majority of the year in class in that school.

Trainees spend Fridays in our training space, or being trained by specialists in different settings around the city such as a museum, art gallery or sports centre. From Mondays to Thursdays, trainees are in one classroom, in one school for the majority of the year, with the aim of becoming the class teacher, taking full responsibility for the class, by Easter at the latest.

All trainees must complete teaching practice in a minimum of two placement settings. There is a short, second school/complementary placement in another setting and age phase in Term 3 and we typically try to simply swap trainees around. This guarantees that the schools are committed to supporting trainees on their additional placements.

Teaching Futures is a paperless organisation and as such everything we do is streamlined to reduce workload and excess use of paper. How we monitor and track trainee progress is no different. Trainees engage in a series of tasks, planning and assessments throughout the year to create bundles of evidence against the Teachers’ Standards. These, along with weekly observations and reviews, are used to help trainees and Programme Leaders guide the progress of all. This process is highly supported and whilst there are six formal assessments points throughout the year, self and peer review happen each and every week.


Unqualified Teacher Scale, approximately c.£16,000

Financial support

Financial support isn’t available for this course because it comes with a salary and the DfE are waiving the fee. It is a combined equivalent package of c.£26,000.

If you choose a course without a salary, you may be eligible for financial support while you study, including bursaries, scholarships and loans.



You will be a graduate, with at least a Bachelor's (Honours) degree, minimum 2:2 or equivalent (3rd class will be considered).

You will also need strong passes (grade C/4+) in GCSE English, Mathematics and Science. Recommended equivalence tests may be considered. You will need to show your original certificates at interview.

You will have at least two weeks (10 days) of prior experience working in a primary school as a volunteer or existing role.

If your qualifications or degree are from outside the UK you should apply to NARIC to check equivalence before you apply. Applications without a NARIC confirmation will be automatically rejected.

Personal qualities

You should be:

  • A highly reflective, emotionally intelligent person, ready to be ‘trained’ again, by experienced professionals
  • Adaptable, flexible and able to respond to feedback and mentoring
  • Able to work well in a team whilst also be self-starter and resilient
  • Well supported by family and friends and entering into this knowingly, fully aware of the intensity such a course will entail.
  • Able to demonstrate the commitment and resilience needed to become a highly effective teacher and lifelong learner.

Other requirements

You will need to complete successful Declaration and Barring Service (DBS) and prohibition checks and will require appropriate ID and documents for this. You must have copies of all of the relevant qualifications before applying.

You will be required to provide a full employment history and satisfactory references supporting your suitability to work with children/young people, in line with Keeping Children Safe in Education statutory guidance for safer recruitment.

The selection process will include a face-to-face interview.