Being a School Direct trainee, I was very surprised to be invited to the New Staff Day at my school. I guess it's not that surprising really, but I didn't expect the school to treat me as 'one of their own' so to speak. My first impressions of the school are really good, and today has made me all the more excited for what is to come. As it was a New Staff Day I was there with a total mix of people, other trainees, NQTs, teachers, subject leaders and cover supervisors. What I was really pleased about was that we were all treated equally and as trainees we were just as valid a part of the group as anyone else and the same provisions had been made for us. I'd been a bit worried that I might be a bit of an outsider as a trainee but today proved me wrong.
In terms of support and other training I think I've been very lucky with the school I'm going to be training at. As a new member of staff each person has been allocated a buddy and those of us that are trainees, NQTs or in their first three years of teaching have also got a mentor. We got the chance to meet them today and spend a little time in our departments to have a look at things and a bit of a chat. In terms of other training, there are the usual non-pupil days each term as well as weekly sessions on various topics so it seems that there will be plenty going on that can only work positively for me during my PGCE. If nothing else, the one thing I will have taken away from today is that I will be training in a very supportive school where everyone is willing to help you, and if this year is anything like I've been told it will be then I'm going to need it!
Later this week I have a social event organised by my lead school, meeting up with other trainees, getting all the important questions answered and getting the all important DBS check out of the way with (I just hope the effort I went to getting the Belgian and Spanish ones sorted is worth it...). I've finally heard from the University about the Summer School, it'll be nine days at the end of August, residential at the University and no charge - food and room are covered in our tuition fees they say. It looks like it will be 9-5 curriculum studies one week and professional studies the other. If all my questions about the structure and assessment etc aren't answered this week then I'd hope that by the end of the summer holiday I'll know it all. Especially as I start at school the following Monday! My teaching hours and what days will be spent training are still a grey area, but it's getting there now, slowly but surely! At least I finally have my degree result, that's something!