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Entry Requirements

Entry requirements for School Direct Fee Paying and Salaried

School Direct Programmes with PGCE Entry Requirements

For entry to the School Direct Secondary programme (School Direct Salaried and School Direct Training) through the LWA SCITT you must: 

1. Hold and be able to provide certificated evidence of having an undergraduate degree, normally a 2:2. The degree or graduate-equivalent qualification shown on your application should relate to the needs of the course and the secondary subject specialism applied for. In line with teacher training initiatives and university guidance, we will not consider anyone with a 3rd class degree unless the applicant is already holder of a high degree or has extensive relevant professional experience. In these circumstances, applicants will need to contact LWA SCITT.

2. Have achieved at least a standard equivalent to a level 4 (grade C) or above in both mathematics and English Language GCSEs (or approved equivalents). If you do not currently hold a GCSE at a standard equivalent to level 4 (grade C) or above in mathematics and English language, please note that we accept the equivalency tests in both mathematics and English offered by Equivalency Testing. Please contact them directly via their websites.

Fundamental competencies in English and mathematics
In accordance with the DfE guidelines, all ITT providers need to confirm that trainees have the necessary skills in mathematics and English by the end of the training year. As all interviews took place online this year, we will be using the induction tasks to make an initial diagnostic of any numeracy and literacy needs. This is so we can identify specific needs and put in place any relevant support, should that be necessary. 

The DfE require trainees to demonstrate competence in the following areas: 
1. Speaking, listening and communicating are fundamental to a teacher’s role. Teachers should use standard English grammar, clear pronunciation and vocabulary relevant to the situation to convey instructions, questions, information, concepts and ideas with clarity. Teachers should read fluently and with good understanding. 

2. Writing by teachers will be seen by colleagues, pupils and parents and, as such, it is important that a teacher’s writing reflects the high standards of accuracy their professional role demands. They should write clearly, accurately, legibly and coherently using correct spelling and punctuation. 

3. Teachers should use data and graphs to interpret information, identify patterns and trends and draw appropriate conclusions. They need to interpret pupil data and understand statistics and graphs in the news, academic reports and relevant papers. Teachers should be able to complete mathematical calculations fluently with whole numbers, fractions, decimals and percentages. They should be able to solve mathematical problems using a variety of methods and approaches including: estimating and rounding, sense checking answers, breaking down problems into simpler steps, and explaining and justifying answers using appropriate language.
Please note that any work to address shortfalls in English and mathematics must be undertaken by the trainee teacher in addition to other aspects of their training. It is the trainee’s responsibility to secure Fundamental English and mathematics, whereas responsibility for assurance lies with the provider 

See the LWA SCITT handbook for a detailed breakdown of the fundamental competencies specified by the DfE (p81). 

Equivalency Testing


For English equivalency, we only accept an IELTS score of 7.0. You can find further information on their website:

Please note we do not except adult literacy and adult numeracy level 2 qualifications as equivalencies for GCSE English and GCSE Maths.

3. Have a broad-based educational background and be able to read effectively and communicate clearly in Standard English.

4. The UCAS form requires candidates to provide the details of two referees. If candidates have studied within the last 5 years, an academic reference must be provided. Ideally, candidates should choose someone who can comment on the candidate’s character and suitability to enter the teaching profession.

5. The other reference should be a school or employer’s reference with a focus on the qualities of character and transferrable skills required for teaching. This reference should clearly state that the referee considers you suitable to work with children and young people. Please be aware that if references are not appropriate, this may delay the processing of your application and may result in the application being rejected.

6. Overseas qualifications must be checked for comparability at degree and school level – this includes GCE A’ level equivalency and e.g. - maths, English GCSE at standard level 4 (C grade) or equivalency.


7. It would be preferable, although not essential, to have recently spent some time observing lessons in a UK Secondary School before submitting an application; however this is not an entry requirement and we recognise that this will have been difficult in the current circumstances. Candidates should make it very clear in their application if they have completed this experience (dates, name of school and the year groups observed) and should be able to use this experience to draw upon if offered an interview.  The purpose of this observation is to enable applicants to offer well-developed responses to interview questions regarding the world of the secondary school. Candidates should note that school placements will be in local state secondary schools so observational experience outside this sector might not provide an adequate understanding of the rewards and challenges presented to teachers in this sector. All observational experience – in either the state or independent sector – should provide an opportunity to gain insight into teaching, learning and reflection upon the professional responsibilities of teachers. A lack of observation experience is not a barrier to application, and such experience can be provided as preparation for induction onto the course.

Additional requirements for all routes Safeguarding

All potential candidates should be aware that offers made for Teacher Training courses and teacher employment are subject to Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service and Prohibition checks. Potential candidates who have worked or lived abroad for 12 months or more cumulatively in the previous 10 years to application will need to provide an Overseas Police check from all the countries lived/worked in during that time.

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