Due to a lack of teaching apprenticeship opportunities in her hometown, Emily moved from Newcastle to Walsall to pursue a career as a teaching assistant with help from Walsall College.
The 18-year-old had family and friends in Walsall, who recommended the college to her. With its modern building and Outstanding reputation, Emily knew she was guaranteed an excellent education with access to state-of-the-art facilities.
So she applied to Walsall College’s Support in Teaching and Learning Apprenticeship course and was invited to an interview.
Impressed with her enthusiasm, the course tutor spoke to the headteacher at Cooper and Jordan Church of England school, which was located in the area Emily was staying in. The headteacher liked the sound of Emily’s profile and requested to see her CV.
“My assessor told me to apply for the role, so I sent my CV over and was invited to an interview with the headteacher. I got the job on the day of my interview, which I was thrilled about!
I absolutely love working there. My colleagues are really nice and they have helped me a lot. My tutor has been great too, and has offered me support where I needed it.
I love working with the children. I learn something new every day when I support them in a wide range of subjects, including maths and English. During the days when I’m in college, my tutor will work with me to pinpoint my targets and my goals. This helps me to stay on track during my apprenticeship and improve my performance, which in turn helps the children. It’s a very rewarding career path.”
Emily was inspired to take up teaching as a career through her family commitments, and feels her apprenticeship has kept her on track.
“Teaching was something I really wanted to pursue – when I was younger, I always helped my nieces and nephews with their sums, spelling and homework. It was nice to motivate them, and to know that your assistance in their learning has helped them.
I wanted to enter the profession through a hands-on approach, to be able to experience what a teaching environment would be like. Through my experiences at Cooper and Jordan, I know teaching is a job I get a lot of satisfaction from.”
Emily now aims to continue with her apprenticeship in teaching support.
“I plan to go onto a Level 3 Support in Teaching and Learning course, which was recommended by my tutor. After that, I’d like to complete a Level 4.”
Kate Rushbrook, teacher at Cooper and Jordan Church of England school, said: “Emily has developed a range of skills throughout her apprenticeship. She has gained vital hands on experience, which has enabled her to become a fantastic Teaching Assistant, and in turn this will help her to thrive when furthering her career. We have thoroughly enjoyed having Emily with us.”
Walsall College offer a number of traineeships and apprenticeships in teaching and learning in schools. To find out more, come to our next Open Day to speak to a tutor.