Frequently Asked Questions

A selection of frequently asked questions can be found below, if you can’t find the information you need then don’t hesitate to contact us.

What are the minimum application requirements?

A detailed explanation of the entry requirements can be found on the Routes into Teaching page.

Which schools are involved in the Doncaster ITT Partnership?

There are a wide range of Primary and Secondary schools are already involved in the Doncaster ITT Partnership but the current Lead Schools are:

Kirk Sandall Infant School (Primary) Partners in Learning Logo (NEW Sep 2016)

Ridgewood (Secondary) DRAFTTs Logo

  • One of Doncaster’s largest Secondary schools, is Lead School for the ‘DRAFTTS’  Alliance representing the majority of Doncaster’s Secondary schools and Academies

What are the Skills Tests?

All trainee teachers are required to pass Numeracy and Literacy tests before starting ITT courses. These tests are designed with the context of core skills that teachers will need to display in their future professional role. All tests are computerised and can be taken at one of  over 150 test centres.

Following changes in Feb 2018, both tests can now be taken up to three times* (FREE of charge) but then can be attempted as many times as necessary, but with a charge for each attempt. Most applicants pass within 3 attempts and we provide FREE coaching  sessions for applicants who have accepted a place with us.

*Prior to Feb 2018, 3 failed attempts meant a ‘lock-out’ for two years, but this has now been removed.

Further official guidance can be found here

Can you tell me more about my course options?

All Initial Teacher Training (ITT) programmes lead to gaining Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) which entitles successful trainees to teach in England as a qualified teacher. Some providers also offer a PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate of Education), but this is not required in order to become a qualified teacher.

The Doncaster ITT Partnership has been providing QTS only training routes since 2003 and some of our ex-trainees are now senior managers (inc. Headteachers) in Doncaster schools.

So, unlike some providers, the Doncaster ITT Partnership is currently able to offer all SCITT & School Direct places as QTS only programmes, although we have an option (see below) to still complete a PGCE, if preferred . This means that we do not have to charge trainees for the additional PGCE element, if they choose not to complete it, and so our QTS only tuition-fees can be substantially less than the £9,250 that most providers charge for a PGCE (with QTS) course (see Tuition-fees below).

Do you offer a PGCE?    

Yes, we are delighted to be able to offer an optional PGCE, if preferred. For the past few years we have worked with the University of Hull, although due to Government contractual rules, we are currently re-tendering  for our PGCE provision, so the provider for our 2019-20 cohort has not yet been decided. It may still be the University of Hull or may be a different university / PGCE provider.

Hull Uni

Currently our trainee teachers can progress through a programme of part-time study to Level 7 and to the award of PGCE, in addition to achieving Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

Trainees are able to apply to the university (tbc) for 60 credits of Accredited Prior Learning (APL) to align their study with the Level 6 modules within the PGCE Secondary or Primary programme of the university. The Partnership and the university then share delivery of the remaining 60 credits (at Level 7) from the PGCE Secondary and PGCE Primary programmes of the university / PGCE provider.

The Doncaster ITT Partnership delivers the majority of the training programme with additional input and academic support provided by the university, delivered at both face-to-face workshops and via on-line support. PGCE trainees benefit from high-quality tuition delivered in well-equipped training centres in Doncaster and through school-based learning in schools and academies in the Partnership.

However, as there is an additional cost (see Tuition-fees below), trainees do not have to do the PGCE if they do not wish to.

Masters (MA)

Once complete, Teachers can consider putting their PGCE’s 60 Credits at Level 7 towards completing their full Masters (MA). Like most universities, the University of Hull offers a number of MA programmes and most universities/colleges would accept the credits towards a relevant MA programme.

Please tell me about current Grants, Fees and Bursaries


Note: We cannot accept individual payment of fees, this must be done through the Student Loan Company (SLC).

Tuition-fee based School Direct & SCITT programmes require successful applicants to fund the cost of their training through the SLC. Students can also find out about maintenance grants/loans at

Fees for 2019-20 are just:

  • £7,600 for ‘QTS only’, and;
  • £8,800 for the ‘PGCE and QTS’.

Like other Tuition-fees (i.e. for undergraduate degrees etc.) the changes (effective from April 2018) now mean that you would not start to replay these until you are earning over £25,000.

Training Grants

School Direct (Salaried) trainees do not pay tuition-fees and are not eligible for maintenance loans, so they do not need to contact the Student Loan Company or Student Finance England. As they are employed as unqualified teachers in their training schools, they receive a ‘salary’ (at least the minimum Scale Point 1 for an Unqualified Teacher) and the DfE provides a ‘Training Grant’ which covers the cost of the QTS training, so there is no cost to the trainee.

However, as the additional cost of the PGCE is therefore paid via slightly higher tuition-fees for those eligible for student loans, School Direct (Salaried) trainees who wish to complete the PGCE will be required to pay the additional fee directly to the university / PGCE provider.


The DfE has now published details of the Bursary Grants for 2019-20

Tuition-fee paying trainee teachers (i.e. not ‘Salaried’) may be eligible for a ‘Bursary’ or ‘Scholarship’ of up to £28,000 - £32,000 for higher degree grades in certain subjects (e.g. Maths*, Physics, Chemistry, Computing, Languages & Geography).

The DfE Bursaries and Scholarships for 2019-20:

  • Maths* – up to £22,000 with an additional £10,000* ‘Early Career Payment‘ (CEP)
  • Physics, Chemistry, Modern Languages, Computing & Geography – up to £28,000

* As Doncaster is an ‘Opportunity Area’, the CEP is enhanced to £15,000

Other priority Secondary specialisms:

  • Biology – up to £26,000
  • English – up to £15,000
  • History and Design & Technology – up to £12,000
  • Music & RE – up to £9,000

Primary and other Secondary Subjects – No Grant

Applicants with a PhD or a Masters may also qualify for an enhanced Bursary in any of these subject areas.

Eligible students receive Bursaries over 10 consecutive monthly payments from October to July.

Trainees on the School Direct (Salaried) programme are not eligible for Bursaries or Scholarships, but do not have to pay tuition-fees as they are employed as unqualified teachers by their schools, who receive a training grant to support the cost of their training and employment.

Trainees who are eligible for a ‘Scholarship’, will need to apply for this themselves to the relevant organisation (e.g. the Institute of Physics etc.), but those eligible for a ‘Bursary’ do not need to apply, as the Partnership will assess eligibility with guidance from the DfE. All payments are then made directly to trainees.

Full details of funding and bursaries etc. can be found at the site.

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How do I make an Application?

The way that applicants for Teacher Training search for 2019-20 places has changed.
To find places with providers, go to the DfE's new site: Find Postgraduate Teacher Training Courses
Applications are still made via the UCAS online application system


Please search for the ‘Doncaster ITT Partnership’ for all Primary and Secondary SCITT places and for Primary School Direct places please search for Doncaster Partners in Learning Teaching School Alliance. For Secondary School Direct places please search for the ‘Doncaster Regional Alliance For Teacher Training (Secondary)

To apply for School Direct or SCITT places go to the DfE Application System (tbc)

Or visit

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Which subjects are currently available?

Please check the application portal for details of currently open subjects on the DfE’s new website: Find Postgraduate Teacher Training Courses

The subjects which our Secondary schools choose to support can change each year depending on the needs of the school and the capacity for supporting that particular subject.

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Do I need experience in a school to apply?

The Partnership ensures that all entrants, as part of the selection procedures, have taken part in a rigorous selection process designed to assess their suitability to train to teach. As such, it is essential that applicants have some good ‘classroom experience’ and, whilst not required to have necessarily been employed in a school, high-calibre candidates will probably have gained at least a few weeks school experience, if at all possible.

This does not need to be paid experience and can be voluntary. Some schools are happy for applicants to contact them with a view to undertaking voluntary work on the understanding that any necessary checks are made (e.g. DBS checks).

What is the difference between training at the Doncaster ITT Partnership and university-based training?

If you chose to train through the Doncaster ITT Partnership you are based in schools for the full year of the training, part of which involves at least a half-term ‘second placement’ at a contrasting school (this is usually almost a full-term for most trainees).

Central training is offered via a variety of central workshops at various local schools and training venues in Doncaster throughout the year. You will also be involved in individual and whole school training within your own schools. You will be allocated a school based ‘Mentor’ and although not employed, unless you are a ‘Salaried’ trainee, you will essentially become a member of the school staff for that year.

University-based training involves more ‘on-campus’ training in lecture halls / rooms with several school ‘placements’ throughout the year at different schools, potentially spread over a very wide area – often up to an hour or more travel from your home.

University / college programmes typically include a PGCE, with no choice as to whether you do it or not. Remember, you don’t ‘need’ a PGCE – you only need QTS to become a qualified teacher in England.

Through the Doncaster ITT Partnership you therefore have the option to undertake further academic qualifications (i.e. a PGCE) working with our PGCE partner / university (see above) – with all training still delivered at venues in Doncaster.


How can I contact you?

Feel free to contact us using the contact form.

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