The Eastbourne Area School Direct School Alliance

Get into Teaching

Making Futures - Get Into Teaching - Making Futures

There are two main routes into training.

School-led Training (School Direct)

If you want your training to be based in a school where you can be fully immersed in the life of a teacher from day one, a school-led training course is for you. You're selected by the school and are based there during your training. You will also spend time in at least one other school to gain the broad experience required to become a qualified teacher.

All school-led courses cover the practical and theoretical elements of teaching, often with university partners. Most school-led courses lead to a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) and/or master's-level credits, in addition to qualified teacher status (QTS).

University-led Training (PGCE)

Universities offer teacher training courses for both graduates and undergraduates. Universities work with groups of schools to offer at least two school experience placements as part of your training. Willingdon works with Sussex and Brighton universities

If you want your teacher training to be based at a university, this is the option for you. A PGCE is available through all university-led training.

School-Centred Initial Teacher Training (SCITT)

East Sussex run a SCITT to train mainly primary students but also some secondary places.
More information can be found at 

Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE)

If you are interested in teaching Maths, Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science or Modern Foreign Languages and have a related degree, both our partners universities offer SKEs.These are short courses to bring your subject knowledge up to scratch. Contact us and we can explain the options.

Taster Visits

If you would like to get the feel of what teaching is like today we can arrange short placements at Willingdon with relevant departments at times to suit you. Alternatively we can put you in contact with our partner schools to arrange a visit.

What do I do next?

Willingdon trains teachers through both routes. The first step is to approach a school to find out what the job entails and what course might suit you best. We can provide guidance for both Primary and Secondary routes. If you would like to find out more contact Mark Ellis/Jan Gregory at 01323 485254 or e mail -


School Direct 2017 - 18

All places for 2017/2018 are now closed.  Places for 2018/2019 will be on the website in September.

Primary School Training Places

Secondary School Places



Contact Mark Ellis/Jan Gregory at 01323 485254 or

or follow us on Twitter: @EASchoolDirect

What is Schools Direct?

School Direct is a programme which gives schools the opportunity to recruit trainees directly, selecting them to train and work within their alliance of schools.

This gives schools greater control over the quality of training and how it is delivered. The training is delivered in partnership with a University training provider. In our case, the providers are the Universities of Brighton and Sussex.

There are two routes into School Direct: salaried and non‐salaried. The salaried route is aimed at graduates with at least 3 years relevant work experience and is an employment based route into teaching. The non‐salaried route is open to all graduates and is funded by tuition fees paid by the trainee. Each route leads to fully qualified teacher status.

Schools in our alliance

Motcombe Infants School
Parkland Infant School
Pashley Down Infant School
Roselands Infant School
St Andrews Church of England Infants School
West Rise Community Infant School
Ocklynge Primary School
Parkland Junior School
Stafford Junior School
Tollgate Community Junior School
West Rise Junior School
Bourne Primary School
Chyngton School
Cradle Hill Community Primary School
Grovelands Community Primary School
Hailsham Academy
Hankham Primary School
Hawkes Farm Primary School
Hellingly Community Primary School
Heron Park Primary Academy
Langney Primary School
Marshlands Academy
Oakwood Primary Academy

Park Mead Primary School
Pevensey & Westham C of E Primary School
Polegate Primary School
Seaford Primary School
Shinewater Primary School
St John's Meads Church of England Primary School
Stone Cross School
The Haven Voluntary Aided C of E Methodist Primary School
White House Academy
Willingdon Primary School
Gildredge House
The Cavendish School
Cuckmere House
Hazel Court
St Catherine's College
The Eastbourne Academy
The Causeway School
Seaford Head School
Ratton School
Willingdon Community School


For applications for 2017/18, all primary and secondary schools in Eastbourne and surrounding areas will be joining together for School Direct applications.

School Direct placements will be determined by matching successful applicants to the most appropriate school and, in certain circumstances, a placement may be found outside our alliance, as we have excellent relationships with a broad spectrum of schools across the area. Placements will always be discussed with candidates.

What is the model for training?

The alliance will deliver all training in conjunction with the Universities of Brighton and Sussex and a range of other partners.

The focus of training will be school and classroom based with the support of experienced teachers and a programme of professional development delivered by the universities, not too dissimilar to that of the PGCE. The alliance will also deliver a range of special, focused training days, delivered by outstanding practitioners based in the schools, which will bring all the alliance trainees together to share their experiences and learn from each other.

What are the entry criteria?

• UK university degree indicated on UCAS site or a recognised equivalent qualification, relevant to your proposed subject area.
• Grade C or above in GCSE English and Mathematics. Successful candidates will have had to have passed a Functional English and Mathematics test. Primary candidates will also require at least a grade C in GCSE Science.
• You will be required to undergo an enhanced DBS check to verify your suitability for working with young people. The alliance places great emphasis on safeguarding.
• Experience of or a demonstrable commitment to working with young people.

Bursaries and Scholarships

For details of the range of funding support available, please contact DFE direct


Read About the Success of School Direct

Fiona Barr
History Student (Salaried) 2015/16

"As a mature student, I feel that the School Direct Salaried option is a very good way to gain a PGCE. I have had the advantage of being paid the unqualified teacher rate throughout the year, while working at Willingdon. This has allowed me to develop my teaching experience during the full academic year and gain more classroom experience and practice whilst receiving the same training and experience as that of the PGCE students. The extra classroom time for salaried trainees helped me to develop more planning, teaching and learning strategies with the full support of my department and mentor.

The support from Willingdon was paramount to allowing me to enjoy the full teacher training experience, allowing me to embrace fully the diverse opportunities and training experiences provided by the university. The combination of both belonging to the university cohort and being a part of the school at the same time is incredibly valuable.

I have been fortunate to get a job at Willingdon and would thoroughly recommend School Direct Salaried training option."



Dan McGough
Maths Student 2015/16

"I have found School Direct training at Willingdon School in partnership with the University of Brighton to be excellent. It has allowed me to train locally and flexibly, providing me with a wide and varied experience on placement. I get to follow the same subject content as the PGCE course, ultimately obtaining the same qualification, at the same time developing strong links with my host school. I would recommend School Direct, particularly at Willingdon School, to anyone thinking of initial teacher training".



Emily Lamb
Drama School Direct student 2014/15

"Schools direct has offered me the opportunity to get the most out of my teacher training. I felt supported by the staff at Causeway and Willingdon Community School and confident in their guidance."








Ellie Woodbridge
English Student 2015/16

"School Direct has been a supportive and straightforward route into teaching. I have found that being attached to a school has been rewarding in terms of being integrated into the school community. Completing my training year at Willingdon has allowed me to develop my professional knowledge and classroom practice under the guidance of experienced mentors and tutors. With hindsight, my School Direct training year was the best route that I could have hoped for in undertaking a teacher training qualification".



Jenni Chase
(as a monk teaching the Black Death)
History - School Direct student 2014/15

"Training at The Eastbourne Academy has given me the opportunity to become fully immersed in school life. I soon felt more like a member of staff than a trainee. The Humanities department made me feel very welcome and offered me support at every turn. This experience will stand be in good stead for when I start my NQT job at Collingwood College in September."




Melanie Fryer
Primary School Direct Student 2014/15

Melanie Fryer has trained as a Primary teacher at St Andrew’s Infant School and secured an exciting Year 2 post at Gildredge House Free School. Melanie said "the School Direct programme has given me the opportunity to train alongside experienced staff in two excellent local schools. The support I have received throughout my teacher training has been outstanding."






How to apply?

For full details of the application process you should access UCAS The application for 2016-17 will open at the beginning of November. Initially, you should apply online through UCAS. Once the universities have checked that you meet the entry criteria, we will then lead the recruitment process with our alliance schools. Places will be filled following an interview process which will involve the potential placement schools and the relevant university provider.

We look forward to receiving your application and wish you well. Should there be any further information you require, please contact Mark Ellis at

Emily Beer