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Mentoring and support for early career teachers

Applications are now open for the Early Career Teacher Support programme: Teaching Core Physics and Developing Physics Specialism. Apply before the end of June.

Published: 4 April 2023

In the past year, nearly 100 early career teachers have benefitted from our Early Career Teacher Support programmes, with more than 65 teachers signed up for Teaching Core Physics and more than 30 teachers registered for Developing Physics Specialism. Applications are now open for the 2023-24 programme.

The Early Career programme offers free physics mentoring and support for teachers from initial teacher training through to their fifth year of teaching.

  • Teaching core physics is for secondary (or middle school) early career teachers (in their first and second year of teaching) teaching physics at any level.
  • Developing physics specialism is for teachers of physics (in their first or second year of teaching) with a significant component of physics teaching on their timetable.

Find out more on our Teacher Support pages and apply now for your FREE place.

The two strands within the programme offer the support needed as teachers progress through their early teaching career. Teaching core physics provides secondary teachers in their first or second year of teaching physics at any stage with half termly coaching sessions in a local peer group. Each of these sessions focuses on a different area of physics, relevant teaching approaches and resources, and can be used to provide additional subject-specific support to the Early Career Framework provision. The local peer group enables teachers to build a support network and share ideas across schools.

“The physics CPD provided by Ogden has been excellent. The mentors have extensive technical knowledge and years of classroom experience to tailor the sessions to your needs. I took away a lot of useful advice which I implemented into my lesson plans.”
Teaching Core Physics

Teaching core physics
– Regional group mentoring sessions
– CPD and resources
– A supportive network of peers

The Teaching Core Physics sessions provide time for reflection and discussion, they consider pedagogy and student misconceptions, and support early career teachers to build their physics content knowledge for KS3/KS4 classroom teaching.

For those teaching a significant physics timetable (usually including some triple science or A-level classes) in their second to fifth year of teaching, developing physics specialism provides bespoke individual mentoring. Teachers will agree goals with their mentor at the start of the year and will be supported as they work towards them. They will also get a funded place for a conference of their choice and receive three books relevant to their development.

Developing Physics Specialism
– Personalised mentor support
– Funding for books and a conference
– Access to CPD opportunities
– Part of a community of peers

You will be supported and guided by your mentor as you work towards agreed goals that will enhance your professional development and teaching practice.

All those who successfully apply for the early career support programme will be invited to a fully funded two-day festival, where they can build networks, share practice and develop skills.

“Retention of excellent science teachers in the profession remains a concern across the education sector,” explains James de Winter, Associate Lecturer in Science Education at the University of Cambridge and Ogden lead for early career teacher development. “We hope that these programmes will provide some much-needed support and nurture for teachers as they begin their careers.”

“The ability to connect with other teachers of physics within my region has helped my confidence greatly. I would definitely recommend this programme to others as it is supportive without overwhelming you, it works around you and your timetable and is tailored to exactly what you need.”
Developing Physics Specialism

Apply before the end of June for academic year 2023-24

It is expected that the majority of those applying will be able to take part but if programmes are oversubscribed, priority will be given to applications that meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • applicant school’s free school meals % above national average (27%)
  • applicant school is Ofsted 3 or 4 rated
  • applicant teacher is lone physics specialist, or
  • applicant teacher is a non-physics specialist teaching post-16 physics and employed as a physics teacher.

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