THE new year is a perfect, natural time to mull over career options.

For many, it’s a golden opportunity to start afresh and try something different.

For others, the pandemic may have forced their hand, pushing them to find a new job or retrain.

Whatever the circumstances, one career which may be in your thoughts is teaching.

And if you like the idea of working with young people, helping and inspiring the next generation, a new training course - one of the only ones of its type in the country - could be a perfect stepping stone.

North Essex Teacher Training has released details of its new undergraduate route for those hoping to graduate with Qualified Teacher Status.

And unlike most other training programmes, you do not need a degree to get started.

NETT is set to become one of a handful of providers in the UK offering the Childhood Primary Education with QTS - BA Honours degree, delivered in association with the University of Suffolk.

Programme director Dr Sarah Alix said: “We’re particularly excited by this development.

“It’s a big one for us as, previously, we weren’t able to accept applications from those who didn’t already have a degree.

“Now, our new offering is an undergraduate route and creates many more possibilities.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Programme Director - Dr Sarah Alix , Primary Programme Leader -John Morgan and Secondary Programme Leader -Jane AdamsonProgramme Director - Dr Sarah Alix , Primary Programme Leader -John Morgan and Secondary Programme Leader -Jane Adamson

“The new course will still give trainees a degree but the difference is that you don’t need one to embark on the course.

“Previously, potential teacher trainees wouldn’t be able to train with us without having a degree first.

“Some universities offer an undergraduate route and have done for years but, for us, this is very new, so people can train locally and get their degree and QTS.

“In addition, we still provide our existing training programme, for trainees with a degree, and that’s for both primary and secondary school trainees.”

With over 25 years experience, NETT is one of the most established teacher training providers in the country, with partnership schools across Colchester and Tendring.

It experienced a 35 per cent increase in trainees last year and expects the trend to continue as they recruit for 2021/22.

Its new programme is a three-year course and a way of helping the profession deal with the aftermath of Covid disruption.

The first year modules will be at the University of Suffolk, with school placements in Colchester and Tendring.

The second and third year modules will be split between the University of Suffolk and NETT, with placements across north Essex.

Places are limited to 15 for a September start.

Teacher Angela Rees works as a training assessment tutor and still has a passion for teaching, having been in the profession for 23 years.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Tutor - Angela ReesTutor - Angela Rees

“Teaching isn’t something you choose by accident,” she said.

“It’s about a desire and passion to educate and help others fulfil their dreams.

“During my career, I’ve observed frequent changes in technology, teaching styles and curriculum.

“But what hasn’t changed is the underlying sensation of wanting to do my best to help children achieve their potential.”

Mrs Rees says that while teaching is part of the job, the role extends beyond the classroom.

She said: “As a young teacher, I had the passion and drive to excite my students but it wasn’t long before I fully understood that wasn’t enough.

“At the heart of teaching is the relationship you have with your pupils and this extends to parents and carers.

“I’ve been lucky enough to explore the realm of teaching, working as a newly-qualified teacher to being part of a specialist maths and behaviour team and then extending my role into leadership.

“All these roles brought their challenges and were mentally engaging.

“They’ve given me the skills to develop further and share my experience with others.

“Since September, I’ve had the privilege to work as part of the North Essex Teacher Training team.

“We pride ourselves on providing personalised support with well-qualified, friendly and supportive staff.”

For more information, contact or visit the North Essex Teacher Training website at