A BLYTH school is leading the way as the government opens the next round of recruitment in a new teacher training programme.
Emmanuel College in Gateshead is one of the designated lead schools in the School Direct scheme and, together with its sister school Bede Academy, in Blyth, has 18 graduate places available.
The programme is aimed at high achieving graduates who want to get a head start in their teacher career by being trained at a top performing school combined with university study.
The first cohort of students started their training in September, including eight shared between Emmanuel and Bede.
The schools, who are partnered with Newcastle University in the scheme, now have the most places available in the region for 2013-14.
Graduates can specify them as their preferred school in their application, which must be done via the government’s Teaching Agency.
Although unpaid during the training period, this year the positions came with bursaries for graduates ranging from £5,000 and up to £20,000 for those with a first class degree in a subject such as math, chemistry, physics or modern foreign languages.
Gwyneth Evans, Principal at Bede Academy, said: “School Direct made the profession more competitive with only the most able graduates securing trainee places, which would ultimately raise even further the standards of teaching in schools.
“The allocation of training places nationally has been prioritised towards outstanding schools with experience of high quality teacher training, which is a great endorsement of Emmanuel, Bede and the other schools in the region who operate the scheme and great news for education in the north east.
“More than 70 graduates applied for our eight places this year.
“The candidates who have come through so far are of a very high calibre and have an enormous contribution to make to the future of Bede.
“Now that the application process is open for 2013-14 we are hopeful of attracting another cohort of high achievers.”
For more information about applying to train to teach on the School Direct programme, visit www.education.gov.uk/get-into-teaching or www.emmanuelctc.org.uk