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The Start of a New Academic Year – from OTT SCITT Director, Patrick Garton

The start of a new academic year is always an exciting time in education and we have thoroughly enjoyed starting to get to know our fantastic new cohort of Associate Teachers (the name we have for our trainees) who started in September.  As ever we have a very diverse group of people training with us, of many different ages and from multiple backgrounds; indeed they are as diverse as the courses that we offer and the wonderful schools that we work with.

Once again our mentors and placement schools have done a brilliant job in supporting the Associate Teachers in the early phase of their training course ensuring that they are able to contextualise and apply the areas of learning from their central and subject specialist training sessions.  As a school centred and school led organisation we are lucky to be based in and spend lots of time visiting schools and this means that we share in the joy of the start of the year for children and young people.

We have also enjoyed sharing the fantastic outcome of the OFSTED inspection that we had late last academic year with colleagues from across the partnership all of whom played a vital role in securing our incredibly successful outcome.  We’re very proud that once again we have been judged as an outstanding teacher training provider in all categories. 

As well as meeting our new Associate Teachers we have also enjoyed meeting people who trained with us last year and who are now embarking on their careers as ECTs or (Early Career Teachers) as part of a national programme.  This is just one of the many benefits that people gain from training with us – ongoing structured support once they have gained Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). 

A final exciting initiative for us at the start of this year is the development of new training hubs across a wider geographical region.  We developed our first training hubs several years ago and this year we are delighted to be developing partnership hubs across Wiltshire and Berkshire and Oxfordshire. This means that across a substantial area we will be able to offer exceptional training and school placements to support even more new teachers into our fantastic profession.


Patrick Garton

OTT SCITT Director