Teacher Training

Dear Prospective Trainee Teacher,

Balcarras Teaching School Hub is delighted to announce that it is now a lead partner with GITEP (Gloucestershire Initial Teacher Education Partnership) SCITT.

GITEP SCITT is a unique collaboration between all the secondary schools in Gloucestershire who work together in a SCITT (school-centred initial teacher training provider). Created in 1997, GITEP SCITT is well established and very highly regarded. They offer QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) with PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate in Education) awarded by the University of Bristol. At their last inspection, in May 2023, Ofsted judged their training to be OUTSTANDING. A link to their website can be found here:  https://www.gitep.org.uk/

If you are looking to train to teach in Gloucestershire you are in the unique position of being able to apply to Balcarras Teaching School Hub, GITEP and Odyssey Teaching School Hub.


Balcarras Teaching School Hub offers the same subjects as GITEP which are;

  • Art and Design
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Computing
  • Design and Technology (Food or Product Design)
  • English
  • Geography
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Modern Languages
  • Physical Education
  • Physics
  • Religious Education

To qualify for the teacher training, you should be a graduate with at least a 2:2 in the subject area you would like to train in – but please do email if you have questions regarding your qualifications.

For further information, please contact Mrs Rebecca Atkin, Assistant Headteacher on rja@balcarras.gloucs.sch.uk

School Experience Days

If you would like to spend a day visiting the school and learning more about teaching, please apply via the School Experience service which can be found via the link below. This will allow you to book with us. https://schoolexperience.education.gov.uk/candidates/guide_for_candidates


Interviews take place at Balcarras school and typically last around an hour. You can let us know beforehand if you have any access requirements or need any reasonable adjustments provided.  

The interview will include a short teaching episode presented to the interview panel, and a formal interview. There will also be an opportunity to discuss the programme, any specific needs you may have, and potential placement schools.


School Direct costs £9250 for PGCE with QTS. There are bursaries of up to £25,000 available and scholarships up to £30,000 depending on the subject you would like to train to teach. For more information about bursaries please click here to go to www.education.gov.uk. If you have questions regarding bursaries and your eligibility for the course then please contact the GITEP office at admin@gitep.org.uk or their number is 0845 0779005.

Further information regarding training to teach can be found at https://getintoteaching.education.gov.uk/

Teacher Training Programme

Your development as a beginning teacher will progress over 3 stages:

* Explore

One week of centre professional studies followed by two weeks of training and practice in September focused on behaviour and inclusion. In your school placement your classroom practice will increase gradually to between 10-12 hours per week by December. The PGCE assignment focuses on inclusion for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities.

* Embed

One week of centre professional studies followed by one week of training and practice in January focused on planning for pupil progress. Your classroom practice will increase steadily to 13-15 hours a week by March as you embed your learning from the Explore stage in a contrasting placement school. The PGCE assignment focuses on developing pupils' understanding of subject specific concepts and addressing misconceptions.

* Enhance

One week of centre professional studies followed by one week of training and practice in April focused on adaptive teaching. Your learning will be enhanced as you return to the familiar environment of your first placement school and your classroom practice will increase steadily to 16-18 hours a week by July to prepare you for the start of your career. You will gain a deeper understanding of pupil progress over time and the wider responsibilities of a teacher. The PGCE assignment focuses on researching a current issue relating to your subject curriculum.

Subject Pathway

We place a high value on subject expertise, so you will have subject training sessions that take place each week, led by current classroom practitioners with recognised expertise in subject pedagogy. You will explore current issues in your subject and develop a range of subject-specific teaching strategies. Close collaboration between your subject lead and your mentor in school supports you to apply this learning directly in your classroom practice.    


The programme leads to Qualified Teacher Status, awarded through GITEP, with a PGCE worth 60 Master's credits awarded by the University of Bristol. No training takes place at the University - subject tutors from the University will visit the GITEP sessions in Gloucestershire.


The training programme follows a parent/twin/parent structure, with three school placements. You will be placed in a parent school from September to December, a contrasting twin school from January to March and will return to the parent school from April to June. Placements are 9-10 weeks in length.

Each school has a professional lead, with responsibility for all the trainees and mentors within the school. You will be allocated a mentor in both of your placement schools, a subject specialist who will see you most days and meet with you individually once a week to review your progress and plan next steps.

Placement schools are mostly in Gloucestershire, but we do work with some schools in neighbouring counties - around 35 schools in total. When placing trainees, we take account of travel distance, particular needs, and trainee requests. We understand that most of our applicants are looking for placements in local schools and we will not require trainees to drive long distances or move home between placements. The vast majority of our trainees travel fewer than 20 miles to placement schools.

When applying to Balcarras Teaching School Hub you will be asked to name one of our placement schools as a preferred location. We cannot guarantee that one of your placements will be at this school, but we will do our best to place you close by. Our placement schools are;

  • Balcarras School
  • Archway School
  • Redncok School
  • Maidenhill School
  • The Cotswold Academy
  • Cirencester Deer Park School
  • Cheltenham Bournside School and Sixth Form Centre
  • Stroud High School
  • Chipping Campden School
  • Sir William Romney’s School
  • Katherine Lady Berkeley’s School
  • Thomas Keble School
  • Farmor’s School
  • Marling School
  • Cirencester Kingshill

Our programme covers the 11-18 age range. If trainees are placed in a 11-16 school for their first placement, we ensure that the second placement gives the opportunity for sixth form experience.