David Ross Education Trust

Broadening Horizons


The aim is to ensure that the TSA offers high quality ITT placements using a wide range of options to engage trainees from diverse backgrounds, which will then provide our Academies with excellent teachers of tomorrow.

The TSA has formed strong links with six ITT providers to provide three different routes, which trainees can access to gain qualified teacher status. These are School Direct, Teach First and our in-house programme, Challenge to Teach.


School Direct

Through partnerships with the University of Leicester, University of Hull, University of Northampton and Bishop Grosseteste University, this one-year programme offers trainees the opportunity to not only gain QTS but also to achieve a PGCE. Once qualified, it is our hope that trainees will apply for employment as an NQT in one of DRET’s academies.

Our partner universities offer the following courses:

University of Leicester: Primary, History, Modern Foreign Languages, English, Maths, Geography, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology.

University of Northampton: Primary

University of Hull: Primary, Secondary, English, Maths, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology.

Bishop Grosseteste University: Primary, Secondary, English, Maths, Modern Foreign Languages, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Business Studies, and PE.


If you wish to apply for School Direct, you need to apply via the UCAS website.


Teach First

Teach First is a national charity whose aim is to attract high quality graduates who might not otherwise have considered teaching and place them in schools where at least 50% of pupils must come from the lowest 30% of the IDACI (Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index).

Teach First’s training programme is two years in length and trainees receive a salary throughout. During the first year of the programme, trainees work towards achieving QTS and the PGCE qualification with one of Teach First’s partner universities, whilst the second (NQT) year of the programme focuses on developing leadership qualities.

We currently have 21 Teach First trainees spread across five DRET academies.

If you wish to apply for Teach First you need to apply via the Teach First website.


Challenge to Teach

This two-year route is for graduate colleagues already working within our Academies who require a salaried pathway to a teaching career and is delivered through a partnership with the University of Buckingham. During Year 1, trainees undertake both primary and secondary phase placements (with emphasis on the phase in which they are specialising) whilst working towards achieving QTS and a PGCE. Successful completion of the first year results in trainees being offered employment as an NQT within one of DRET’s academies.

We currently have five secondary trainees in their second year. We also have three primary trainees and eight secondary trainees who are in their first year. 

If you wish to apply for Challenge to Teach you must already be employed within the David Ross Education Trust.