Frequently Asked Questions

Student Teacher

This section provides some of the most frequently asked questions by student teachers, particularly around your placement. Students should visit the GTCS website for the most up to date information.

 

 

Q1. If students fail to meet the 55% attendance requirement due to having to self-isolate multiple times, would they have to delay their probation and resit the placement?

Q2. My university doesn’t fund transport for students when travelling to and from placement. What kind of support is available?

Q3. I work part-time to support myself and my hours clash with my placement. What should do?

Q4. Will our future employers view disruption to placements and university courses as a disadvantage?

Q5. Will support be offered if we need to teach online?

Q6. As a student teacher, can I choose to wear a mask at school? And what should I do if someone challenges my decision?

Q7. There’ve been issues with communication at my university. What can I do?

Q8. Students are struggling to get access to counselling. What can we do?

Q9. I live with a vulnerable person and I am due to start placement shortly and I am really concerned. What should I do?

Q10. It has been hard connecting with people and making friends are there any student networks I can join?

 

Q1. If students fail to meet the 55% attendance requirement due to having to self-isolate multiple times, would they have to delay their probation and resit the placement?

Disruption to placement should be raised with your university. Earlier this year, the GTCS and Council of Deans anticipated that there would be difficulties in the event of a second wave, including disruption to placements. There are other routes to placement. For example, you could extend your studentship to the next academic year or you could take the flexible route to probation.

 

Q2. My university doesn’t fund transport for students when travelling to and from placement. What kind of support is available?

Your university should have a hardship or discretionary fund available. Check your university website for more information or contact your student union for further information and support.  

 

Q3. I work part-time to support myself and my hours clash with my placement. What should do?

You're entitled to request flexible working from your employer, in line with your studies. More information on making a request for flexible working can be found on the ACAS website. If your request is unreasonably denied, then you may wish to raise a grievance.

If there are others in the workplace who are experiencing similar issues think about getting together and raising the issue collectively. Even if you are studying part-time, ensure you are in the right trade union which represents workers in your sector. As a student member you can be a member of the EIS and other trade unions.

 

Q4. Will our future employers view disruption to placements and university courses as a disadvantage?

Employers are likely to be impressed that you’re completing your teacher training under such difficult circumstances. This year’s student teachers are showing great resilience, ingenuity, and commitment to the profession. You should highlight these as strengths in the recruitment process.

 

Q5. Will support be offered if we need to teach online?

The EIS have published guidance on blended and remote learning. Your university would also provide support with this transition.

 

Q6. As a student teacher, can I choose to wear a mask at school? And what should I do if someone challenges my decision?

The EIS and national government advice is that teachers should wear face masks if they wish. If somebody challenges you on this, then you should raise it with your school rep or your EIS Local Association Secretary immediately. 

 

Q7. There’ve been issues with communication at my university. What can I do?

You should raise this collectively with your course mates to your university and through your student association. You may also advise your course tutor of your personal concerns regarding the communications that you have received.

 

Q8. Students are struggling to get access to counselling. What can we do?

If you’re struggling with your mental health, then you should contact your GP and let your personal tutor know. Where a group of students are beginning to struggle with their mental health or if you believe the university can do more to support students then you should raise it collectively with  your university and through your student association.

 

Q9. I live with a vulnerable person and I am due to start placement shortly and I am really concerned. What should I do?

If you live with a vulnerable person then you should inform your course leader in the first instance to discuss your options and the mitigations available. School Risk Assessments should be in place and updated regularly. The main mitigations for the reduction of Covid-19 infection are 2m social distancing, face masks, ventilation, regular handwashing, and hygiene measures that should make schools controlled environments. 

 

Q10. It has been hard connecting with people and making friends are there any student networks I can join?

Many University clubs and societies have moved online, and you will find one for almost every interest, even for quizzes and socialising.  Check out your university Student Union Website or the NUS website for further information.





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