It is important to have a realistic awareness of the demands of the profession you are seeking to join, otherwise you might start the training and pull out when you realise that the role of a teacher is not at all what you expected.
We therefore require candidates to demonstrate an understanding of the role of a teacher and some awareness of current issues facing the profession. Under normal circumstances, spending a couple of days observing relevant lessons in a state secondary school would help to support your interview answers, but we understand this is likely to be impossible to arrange while strict Covid safeguarding measures are in place in schools. We would not reject a candidate based on their lack of observational school experience if their application was otherwise good.
TOP TIP WHILE COVID RESTRICTIONS APPLY
We suggest that you first look at the vacancies on our website and read the relevant course documents thoroughly, including opening the links within them to read about the schools and look at where they are on our map.
Use that to make an initial judgement about which schools you prefer.
Then email us showing that you are a serious potential applicant by confirming that you have read the information on the WLTSA website and have looked at the course document and have read about the different schools. You should name the school or schools (perhaps 2) that you are particularly interested in. Then you could add that recognising that it is unlikely to be possible for you to visit the school due to their Covid safeguarding restrictions, might it be possible to speak to speak to someone in their [subject] department to get a better idea about xyz.
We can then forward this email directly to the right people at the school/s in question. You could add a sentence about your degree and whether you already meet the GCSE requirements perhaps. You must include your phone number.
For anyone applying for a programme at a special needs school, experience of children with special needs would be a significant advantage.
The DfE School Experience Programme (SEP)
You should also be aware of the DfE’s School Experience Programme. This is a portal where some schools upload available dates for giving candidates school experience. As long as you have registered on the DfE’s Get Into Teaching website, you can book experience days through the SEP for many subjects, but there may be Covid limitations with dates available. See more information through the following link: https://getintoteaching.education.gov.uk/getting-school-experience