About the Straight to Teaching QTS preparation course
Straight to Teaching is a high quality, low-cost alternative to initial teacher training that is completely personalised to you and your school.
This unique, online and in-school professional development programme is delivered as QTS preparation followed by application for the Assessment Only (AO) route to gaining Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)*. It takes into consideration your existing school and teaching experience**, which means you could become a qualified teacher in less than one academic year – depending on your existing evidence and experience.
Straight to Teaching is aimed at suitable school staff (such as unqualified teachers, high level teaching assistants or teaching assistants) who have been teaching pupils** and want to become fully qualified teachers. The programme supports and prepares you in your existing school to meet the English Teachers’ Standards, providing you with the opportunity to prepare a portfolio of evidence and to demonstrate that you meet the QTS requirements before you start the Assessment Only process.
If you already have at least two years teaching experience**, you may be eligible to go straight to assessment via our Assessment Only (AO) route, which assesses you for QTS in as little as 12 weeks.
Available in any school in England, or internationally if the school follows the English national curriculum, the Straight to Teaching QTS preparation programme and Assessment Only route are designed to put more teachers with Qualified Teacher Status into the classroom.
Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)
Please note that Tes Institute's Straight to Teaching programme and AO route leading to the award of Qualified Teacher Status qualifies you to work as a teacher in England.
If you’re planning to teach outside of England please discuss the programme, and the required teaching qualification for your particular region, with your employing school or the relevant regulatory body before applying.
If you plan to teach in Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales you should consult the relevant regulatory body before applying for one of our programmes:
- General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland
- The General Teaching Council for Scotland
- General Teaching Council for Wales
* The title of this award is subject to change due to an ongoing government consultation at the time of going to press. If you are planning to teach outside England please discuss the programme, QTS, and the required teaching qualification for your particular region, with your employing school or the relevant regulatory body before applying.
**Teaching is planning (including resourcing) delivering, assessing, and reporting on pupils’ progress as defined by the Specified Work Regulations 2012.
As well as providing you with the opportunity to prepare and be assessed for QTS, Straight to Teaching could help you to:
- Become employed as a fully qualified teacher
- Be promoted and/or gain more job security
- Increase your salary by up to £7,000* per annum
- Become an outstanding teacher
- Share best practices with colleagues
- Play a more significant role in school leadership and management
Your progress will be continually assessed against the English Teacher’s Standards throughout the Straight to Teaching programme, helping you to build a portfolio of evidence which will contribute to your independent QTS assessment via AO. Your pathway tutor and school mentor will monitor your work, responding to online tasks and reflections in your Learning Diary, while supporting your progress towards the Teachers’ Standards and the award of QTS.
During the final tutor visit of your Straight to Teaching programme you’ll be recommended for independent QTS assessment via our AO route, provided that the pathway tutor and school are confident that you have sufficient evidence and your teaching is deemed to be ‘good’ or better.
*On average, a fully qualified teacher in England earns approximately £6,000-£7,000 more a year than their unqualified counterpart. For full details about qualified and unqualified teacher pay scales, visit www.education.gov.uk/get-into-teaching/salary.
Delivery - QTS preparation & QTS assessment
Your Straight to Teaching programme will be delivered through a mix of in-school experience and online learning and theory. The course will enable you to develop your teaching and prepare a portfolio of evidence to demonstrate that you meet the Teachers’ Standards. You can then apply for an independent QTS assessment via our Assessment Only route.
The length and context of the preparation required will be based on your existing experience and will be designed in collaboration with you and your school. Your skills and experience will be assessed against the Teachers’ Standards at the beginning of the programme and this will determine your QTS development plan.
If you have significant teaching experience already, then your QTS preparation will be shorter and if you’re an experienced teacher with a degree and a minimum of two years teaching practice, you may be eligible for the Assessment Only route immediately*.
*You must have been teaching for two or more years before you can be assessed under the Assessment Only Criteria.
You should be a self-motivated person with the desire to become a qualified teacher and meet the following entry criteria:
- Be employed in a school in a teaching role by the time you start the programme
- Have the express agreement of your current or intended employer (school) to support you to prepare for QTS through Straight to Teaching and be assessed via our Assessment Only route (the school will be asked to sign a working agreement with Tes Institute). This support includes the appointment of a suitable member of staff to act as a school mentor
- Have the relevant experience and skills to succeed through the Straight to Teaching programme
- Have the health and physical capacity to teach
- Have been subject to and passed the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and criminal/other records check
You must also meet the following suitability criteria before you can be recommended for QTS assessment via Assessment Only:
- Have achieved a standard equivalent to grade C/4 or above at GCSE level in English and mathematics. Those intending to teach pupils aged 3-11 will also need to have achieved a standard equivalent to grade C/4 or above at GCSE level science*
- Hold a degree** from a UK higher education institution or equivalent qualification
- Be able to demonstrate that you have the appropriate intellectual and academic capabilities and personal qualities, attitudes, ethics and values
- Be able to communicate clearly and effectively in standard English
- Have passed the professional skills tests
- Have undertaken significant teaching experience for a minimum of two years (this can include prior experience as well as experience completed during the Straight to Teaching programme)
- Have taught in two or more contrasting schools and also taught the full age and ability range for that age range.
- Be able to demonstrate that you meet the English Teacher’s Standards across a minimum of two consecutive age ranges for your chosen teaching specialism
*It is the standard and not the certificate that matters. Applicants who do not have a grade C/4 GCSE may be able to show they meet the required standard by taking an equivalency test available through Tes Institute, or by offering other agreed evidence of attainment.
**Learners who are in the process of completing a degree may still be able to start the programme.
Take the first step to get QTS and qualify to teach in England by joining one of our Straight to Teaching start dates.
|Application Deadline||Start Date|
|17th September 2018||5th November 2018|
|12th November 2018||7th January 2019|
|21st December 2018||25th February 2019|
|25th February 2019||23rd April 2019|
|22nd April 2019||3rd June 2019|
|10th June 2019||9th September 2019|
We strongly recommend that you submit your completed application as soon as possible to secure your preferred start date. Applications received after the deadlines above will be pushed into the next available start date.
Straight to Teaching courses fees
|Straight to Teaching||Total fee||Fee without VAT|
|Short QTS preparation (1 to 1.5 terms) and Assessment Only||£5,400||£4,500|
|Medium QTS preparation (2 to 3 terms) and Assessment Only||£7,200||£6,000|
|High QTS preparation (4 to 5 terms) and Assessment Only||£9,000||£7,500|
All fees include the full Straight to Teaching programme and the cost of QTS assessment unless otherwise stated. The length of your Straight to Teaching programme (and fee) will depend on the amount of existing experience that you have. When you apply, we’ll give you an estimate of how long we think the programme could take, and therefore the cost of the course, based on the information that you provide in your application.
Fees are quoted inclusive of VAT. Subject to exceptions, VAT will be chargeable at the rate of 20 per cent. Where the school, rather than the individual agrees to pay all or part of the tuition fee they may be able to recover VAT. Schools may consider meeting the tuition fee and making their own arrangements, if they wish to do so, with the individual concerned.
A Professional and Career Development Loan (PCDL) could help you gain QTS
You can apply for a Professional and Career Development Loan (PCDL) to help cover the cost of the programme. A PCDL is a commercial bank loan and is very different to grants or bursaries as it must be repaid even if you don’t finish your course. These loans are available for up to 24 months and can be used to help you become a qualified teacher. The loan can cover programme fees, living expenses and other associated costs depending on your circumstances.
Repayments will start a month after you complete or leave the Straight to Teaching programme. The government will pay the interest during the programme and for one month after you leave. For further information on PCDLs visit Professional and Career Development Loans.
Please note: Professional and Career Development Loans will close to new borrowers in 2019. The final date for submitted applications will be Friday 25 January 2019, with a course start date no later than the 24th March 2019. Existing loans will not be affected.
How to apply
Our enrolment team will need to speak to you to discuss your experience and eligibility for joining the programme before you can apply. They’ll be able to talk you through the programme in more detail and provide advice based on your current teaching experience.
Submit an enquiry form and we’ll contact you to discuss the programme further. You’ll also receive a copy of the Straight to Teaching QTS prospectus which will provide more detail of how the programme works.
Westbrook primary school's Straight to Teaching experience
Straight to Teaching has had an enormous impact, it has had wide ranging benefits to other staff as they have the skills of mentoring somebody on the programme and for the candidate it is fantastic because they’re going through a route that they might not have been able, traditionally to access. Watch the videos here...
Will Lyons - Primary School Straight to Teaching, international
The Straight to Teaching programme provided me with an opportunity to use my experience and add to it. Tes Institute’s course is a high quality programme and from the information available from both Tes and other sources it provides a realistic assessment of a teacher’s ability. Read more here...
Angela Mackenzie - Geography Straight to Teaching
When I was applying to become a teacher I had to make sure that the course was suitable for myself, my school and my young family. Straight to Teaching was the only option that suited everyone and it also allowed me to keep earning whilst working towards Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) Read more here...
Helen Horner - Primary school Straight to Teaching
After working as an HLTA and covering lessons I decided that I wanted to gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) to become a teacher. It was important to find a course that allowed me to learn and continue earning at the same time and whilst I considered distance learning, Straight to Teaching was the best fit for me. Read more here...
Oliver Moore - Computing Straight to Teaching
I had been working as an unqualified Music teacher for over a year before I discovered that I could gain QTS through Straight to Teaching. Due to the size of the school I couldn’t take regular time off to train to teach on a traditional route, but the fact that I could complete Straight to Teaching without leaving my school meant that it was the best option for me. Read more here...