Spotlight on teacher training: the greatest job in the world?

Teaching is the one profession that creates all other professions. —Unknown

There is no shortage of negative press about teaching as a career. The Guardian newspaper recently published an article in which it cited a survey by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) union of trainees and newly qualified teachers; this found that of those who have considered resigning, 76% cited heavy workloads as the reason. More than 54% said that they did not think they’d be teaching in 10 years’ time and almost a quarter imagined they’d move on in half that time.

This may seem disheartening, but some positive statistics also came out of the report. One of the most powerful reasons (75%) for joining teaching was a desire to make a difference, and 80% said they taught because they enjoyed working with children. Contrary to popular belief, just below 20% went into teaching because of long holidays - and I'm sure none of the teachers at Dr Challoner's, or those training with the Astra SCITT, were solely motivated by that either!

The Astra SCITT is the name of the School-Centred Teacher Training 'arm' of Challoner's, an organisation which is accredited by the DfE and rated 'outstanding' by Ofsted. Astra has trained nearly 500 new teachers since 2013, across a network of over 300 schools in Bucks and beyond, and we are based in the offices at the bottom of the DCGS admin corridor, housing a team of 12 staff, working to recruit, train and retain teachers as well as ensure all staff at Challoner's have access to the very best development opportunities. It is likely that most of the Challoner's teachers will have been involved with Astra in some way over the last few years, either through their training or by contributing to the organisation's success.

On Tuesday 11th October, applications will open again for teacher training for the 2023/24 academic year, and we would be delighted if members of our parent or wider community were to get in touch to find out more.

Apply here to be a full or part time trainee in either primary or secondary education from September 2023. Information can also be found on the DfE website Information can also be found on the Astra website

We will also be hosting an open afternoon at Aylesbury Grammar School on 19th October from 3.45pm, and will also be at the National Train to Teach event in London on Saturday 26th November. Flyers and our prospectus are in the Challoner's reception area, or just drop us an email if you want to talk about these opportunities further (

And finally, you may have heard the expression, Those who can, do; Those who can't, teach, but I think I prefer Aristotle's take on things: Those who know, do. Those that understand, teach.