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What is School Direct?

School Direct is a route into teacher training which allows schools or groups of schools to take a leading role in ITT provision in partnership with an accredited provider. It is underpinned by a belief that schools can improve the system by creating more school led training that best meets the needs of schools and trainees. School Direct is a programme where schools recruit trainees directly and select them to work within their partnership of schools. This new training route allows you to choose the school in which you train with an expectation, but no absolute guarantee, of employment once you finish.

If you prefer to spend more time training in the classroom, putting theory into practice and gaining confidence through increased contact with the school environment, then a School Direct programme could be a good option for you.


What are the different routes?

In order to help tailor training to your skills and experience, there are two separate School Direct training options:

  • School Direct Training Programme (Unsalaried) is available to high-quality graduates and is funded by tuition fees paid by the trainee. You may be eligible for a bursary of up to £20,000 to support you while you train.
  • School Direct Salaried is an employment-based route available to high-quality graduates with at least three years’ career experience who will earn a salary whilst they train. The trainee is employed as an unqualified teacher.

Information about these different routes as well as bursaries and scholarships can be found at

In addition to awarding QTS, both the University of Brighton and University of Sussex also offer the PGCE qualification on the School Direct programme.


Current School Direct Vacancies at Varndean School

Please see the School Direct Allocations and Partner Schools listing for the latest vacancies.


Bursaries and Funding

DfE Get Into teaching: Bursaries and funding

Increased tax-free bursaries and scholarships for 2016-2017


Timeline for Recruitment

You will initially apply online through NCTL.

Your application in the first instance will go to Hove Park School, Lead School in the Brighton and Hove Partnership. Your application will then be processed through the Universities and passed on to relevant schools. Thereafter we will commence the recruitment process as a Partnership of Schools across the City.

University Interviews: a subject interview, a presentation on a given topic, a written task and compliancy checks will be conducted on this day.

School Based Interviews: the day will comprise a teaching activity, a discussion activity, and a formal interview.

Please see our vacancies page for current opportunities.


Who is in the Partnership?

In 2016/17 Hove Park School will be working in partnership with nine other secondary schools and two Sixth Form Colleges in Brighton & Hove as well as the Universities of Brighton & Sussex:

Hove Park School
Brighton Aldridge Community Academy
Blatchington Mill School
Cardinal Newman School
Dorothy Stringer School
Longhill School
Patcham High School
Peacehaven Community  School
Portslade Aldridge Community Academy
Ringmer Academy
Shoreham Academy  
University of Brighton
University of Sussex
Varndean College
Varndean School
Warden Park  

What are the entry criteria? ITT Providers – Brighton University and Sussex University

  • UK university degree or recognised equivalent.
  • Grade C or above in GCSE English Language and Mathematics.
  • It is our expectation as a Partnership that candidates applying for both Salaried and Unsalaried Routes have a minimum of 20 days of school based experience. For the Salaried Route, you will need to have 3 years of careers experience, not necessarily in a school environment.
  • You will be required to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service clearance application form to verify your suitability to work with young people.
  • You will be required to take the numeracy and literacy professional skills tests prior to applying.


Other helpful resources

Department for Education get into teaching information

University of Brighton course 

University of Sussex course

Is your child is due to start in Year 7
in September?

Please see our
Year 7 Intake page