School Placements

Where will I learn?

As a trainee teacher, you’ll be based at one of our 48 Harris Federation academies, where you’ll learn to teach alongside expert classroom practitioners in an exciting, vibrant environment.

Your invaluable on-the-job training will be supplemented by practical subject and pedagogical training each week, usually at our training centre in Bermondsey, South East London.

Your school placement

When you submit your application to us through DfE Apply, you are applying to the Harris Federation as a whole, rather than to an individual academy. The location of your potential school will be discussed with you at interview stage.

At the academy you will have your own personal mentor – an experienced teacher who will oversee the school-based element of your training year. They will support you, be a model of effective practice, observe your practice and meet with you weekly.

You will also benefit from a short second placement at different Harris academy. This means you can experience teaching in a contrasting school, to help you to develop your skills in a different context or age-range.

Weekly Core Training sessions

During the course you will spend one day a week at Core Training with your fellow trainees at Harris Initial Teacher Education, based at Harris Academy Bermondsey in South East London.

These training sessions are facilitated by our expert practitioners who will model outstanding planning, teaching and assessment, to support your development as a teacher. In addition to this, we regularly welcome a wide range of specialist Keynote speakers [link to news page]. We will help you to develop your teaching skills and subject knowledge away from the classroom, and you will have lots of opportunities to interact and learn from peers from across subjects and phases.

The central London training base allows you to be in the midst of one of the most exciting cities in the world, using purpose-built training spaces and within easy access of the Federation academies.

Other learning opportunities

We are partnered with Kingston University who validate the PGCE element of our course. We also host specialist training sessions at other academies in the Federation on topics such as behaviour management, early years curriculum and KS5 teaching at Harris Westminster Sixth Form. These allow you to experience the environment of your peers’ working spaces as well as your own placement schools.

School based Training

We’ve structured our courses to make them challenging and rewarding, while considering and supporting your wellbeing.

Your weekly timetable will be decided by your placement academy. All academies are sent the same approximate guideline for timetabling, but as lesson times and lengths vary, each trainee will have their own unique timetable.

To reflect your status as a new professional who is just starting out in your teaching career, you will start with a reduced timetable and build up during the course of the year. The timetable will always allow for weekly mentor meetings, collaborative working and observations of others. It will never exceed the loading of an Early Career Teacher (ECT) and you will be supported at each step of your training journey.


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