'Getting trained is hard enough as it is'

18th March 2005 at 00:00
Graham Lobb had to save for almost a decade to train as a teacher.

The married father-of-two is halfway through a primary PGCE at Derby university and believes top-up fees will be a huge hurdle for those coming after him.

Mr Lobb, 33, worked for an internet bank when he left university in 1995, but has always wanted to teach.

"We've been saving for the past nine years to enable me to go into teaching," he said. "It's been amazing, and I haven't regretted it one bit.

The course is great and the children are so keen to learn."

Like most trainees, he gets a pound;6,000 annual training bursary, and his fees are paid. Derby has yet to decide whether it will introduce top-up fees, but he said any prospect of paying extra fees could have ruined his dream.

Mr Lobb, who lives in a village just outside Derby, said: "It would have made a huge difference.

"When you start teaching at this stage in life it is hard enough as it is - to have to pay tuition fees would certainly have put me off for another few years. Then I'd have to wonder whether I was too old to start training. I'm still paying off a pound;4,000 student loan. Think about students who are leaving now with debts of pound;20,000. It will have a massive effect on them."

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today