School Direct

Why School Direct?

School Direct is an exciting school led option into teaching that offers practical, hands on training and education based in good and outstanding schools.

School Direct

Why School Direct?

Here at Sea Mills Primary School we are passionate about delivering outstanding learning for our pupils and we believe this begins with quality first teaching. This is why we are proud to be a part of the Pickwick Learning Teaching School Alliance to deliver School Direct.

We provide Schools Direct teacher training in liaison with the University of Gloucestershire to help ensure future generations of teachers become outstanding practitioners. Schools Direct enables trainees to apply directly to train in a particular school, and the vast majority of the course is based in school working with teachers and children, ‘learning on the job’.

From the word go, trainees hit the ground running with school experience. They spend 16 days at university, 16 days together participating in cluster training with the rest of the year learning on the job in 2 to 3 schools. Trainees become part of the staff team in their host schools and benefit from all the expertise and in house training available.

School Direct Trainee to Newly Qualified Teacher

We are excited to announce that our first cohort of trainees have now passed their initial teacher training programme and now in schools putting all they have learnt into practice. We are extremely proud of their success!


‘On the job training’ – what does the programme look like?

  • Based in schools from day 1, for the whole year, 4 days a week
  • Terms 1, 2, 5, 6 in school 1
  • Terms 3, 4 in school 2
  • Negotiate the schools you want to train in from our alliance members
  • Observe and learn from Good and Outstanding practitioners learning to teach on the job
  • 16 days of University-based training
  • 16 days of Cluster-based training lead by practitioners across the alliance
  • Gradually build up the quantity of teaching as you develop your skills and experience
  • Full induction into the schools you’re training in
  • Personalised approach to your development
School Direct Teachers


We are pleased to announce that our training programme is now full for September 2018. If you are interested in joining us in September 2019, please watch this space for more details in the coming months.

Our training programme offers unsalaried places (PGCE, QTS) for applicants.  Trainees on the unsalaried route are students of the University of Gloucestershire for the duration of the course.

Many of our previous unsalaried School Direct trainees have been offered employment in schools with Pickwick Learning Teaching School Alliance following training.

We have over 30 schools across Wiltshire, Bristol, Bath and South Gloucestershire in our alliance – finding a school for you to train in that works well for you is a priority for us and we organise this in partnership between you and the school.

Why train to teach with us?

  • Work in partnershipwith us, deciding together which schools you’ll be placed in
  • Learn to teacher ‘on the job’, observing and working alongside outstanding practitioners based in schools from day 1 for the entire year (terms 1, 2, 5 & 6 in school 1 and terms 3 & 4 in school 2)
  • Undertake placements in a range of schoolsgradually building up the quantity of teaching as you develop your skills and experience
  • Benefit from individual and specialist support from an in-housementor on school placements
  • Seek financial supportfrom Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loans(home and EU/EEA students may be eligible for a tuition fee loan to cover the cost of tuition fees. This is available through Student Finance England. You won’t have to pay the cost of tuition charges up front and you will only repay the loan once you’re in full-time employment and earning above £21 000) or a Bursary (as a general primary teacher you could be eligible for a training bursary of £3 000 with a first or PhD)
  • Train collaborativelyacross 16 Pickwick cluster training days and 16 University led days
  • Access exceptional ICT facilitiesincluding a Regional Training Centre for Apple Education
  • Experience a wide range of SENDincluding a specialist speech and language centre
  • Visit schools with Forest Schools and Outdoor Learning

Find out if you are Eligible for School Direct

Find out How to Apply

Our Alliance Partners

Our Teaching School is called the Pickwick Learning Teaching School Alliance (PLTSA) and spans across Bristol, Bath, South Gloucester and Wiltshire. Our partners include:

  • The Aster Housing Group
  • Bailey’s Court Primary School
  • Bath Spa University
  • Corsham Primary School
  • Malmesbury Primary School
  • OJO Solutions Ltd
  • Sea Mills Primary School and Children’s Centre
  • Snapdragon Nurseries Ltd
  • The University of Gloucestershire.