Transition to Teach is a Department for Education funded programme delivered by Cognition Education offering free support to businesses and their employees, in order to raise awareness of teaching as a credible alternative to those who may be facing redundancy, coming to the end of their contract or taking early retirement.
This specialist support starts from the initial exploration into teaching as a possible career and continues right through to the end of the first year as a newly qualified teacher. The Transition to Teach team work closely with employers to support exiting staff into an exciting new teaching career.
Down-sizing and restructuring are particularly challenging times for employers, especially when they lead to job losses. Many employers want to do the right thing to support affected staff and most offer support with preparing CVs, job search and interview techniques. Some companies go even further to support their staff by proactively seeking and sharing job opportunities, and one of those options can be teaching.
“Sometimes employers can also be wary about being seen to promote one career over another,” said Jo Holland, Employer Engagement Manager for Transition to Teach. “We always explain that it’s not about promoting a particular career, but more about giving staff at risk of redundancy possible avenues to explore. There is a lot of sensitivity around redundancy for companies and for staff too.”
“Teaching isn’t for everyone, our job is to raise awareness of teaching as a credible career opportunity for employees at risk of redundancy and help them to decide if teaching is for them. It’s about Transition to Teach being there when companies need us. We might hear nothing at all from an organisation, and then a year later, they get in touch, perhaps because redundancies have been confirmed.”
“Some sectors have been particularly affected by the pandemic and there has certainly been more interest from companies for the Transition to Teach programme. Some employers will bring in outplacement companies, and we’ll work alongside outplacement teams as well as careers advisers and job centres.”
Once companies have an active redundancy situation, Transition to Teach offer support in a variety of ways, said Jo:
“The first step is usually to set up a meeting, find out timescales, share our employer pack and find out how the company wants us to support them. In many cases the company will just take this information and disseminate it to staff but others will ask for more support. For example, we recently provided a private webinar for a client in the travel industry and we also support army resettlement on an ongoing basis.”
“Some staff experience redundancy rounds every year, sometimes multiple times each year. The coronavirus pandemic is causing people from all sectors to re-evaluate their careers, not just those at risk of redundancy.”
Liverpool-based Leanne Cunningham worked in the hospitality industry before changing careers to train to teach English with the University of Cumbria.
“I have received thorough support, specialist knowledge and consistent guidance from Transition to Teach throughout my training year and first year as a newly qualified teacher,” said Leanne. “Having this support has enabled me to make choices that will better my teaching career and help me to excel within teaching at secondary level.”
Leanne contacted Transition to Teach and received advice and practical support with applying to a teaching course; Leanne continued to receive support right through to the end of her first year as a newly qualified teacher.
Cheshire-based career changer Joe Trippett is a former detective constable and personal trainer who changed careers to train to teach maths with Ashton-on-Mersey school-centred initial teacher training.
“I love helping people in general and I’ve always gravitated towards roles where I can do this,” said Joe. “Working with the police made me realise exactly how important school is to set people on the right path in life.”
“I have received excellent support and encouragement since joining the process. Transition to Teach have helped me with securing a placement, accessing financial support and completing assignments. The team made sure I knew what to expect and I had plenty of information available to me.”
Joe also received support from Transition to Teach to apply for his first teaching role:
“I recently secured a full-time teaching post ready for next year and I am grateful for the advice I received during the application process. I would definitely recommend the programme to anyone entering teaching from a different profession.”