A new trainee teacher programme is encouraging mid-career professionals from Singapore to make the switch to becoming a teacher at some of the city-state’s top international schools.
The Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) for Trainee Teachers offers Singapore citizens and PRs an opportunity to join the international schools sector. The eight schools signed up to the programme are the Australian International School, Canadian International School, GEMS World Academy, Middleton International School, NPS International School, One World International School, SJI International, and Stamford American International School.
Over the course of 12 months, trainees will be offered 3.5 days of on-the-job training per week at one of the eight international campuses. They will also undergo a part-time distance learning course University of Nottingham to qualify for a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (International).
One of the participating schools, Middleton International School (MIS), explained the benefits of joining the PCP. It told WhichSchoolAdvisor.com:
“We intend to broaden the teaching and learning programme at MIS by bringing in professionals who have had experience outside of teaching. At the same time, we would also like to integrate the unique Singapore context of rigour, hard work, commitment and passion into our practice.
“PCP is a valuable programme for those who want to be a part of it. It adds depth to the professional experiences of the trainee teacher. Coming from another domain or industry, these trainee teachers understand the needs, challenges, dispositions and competencies required in a working environment outside of education. It is this external perspective and experience that will add tremendous value to the existing teaching team as well as to the students.”
The global Cognita group has two schools involved in the programme – Australian International School and Stamford American International School. Andy Hancock, director of education for Cognita Asia, said:
"Not only will this collaboration bring our schools into even greater contact with our host country; it gives us a chance to provide something back to Singapore.
"We look forward to welcoming our first student teachers in the near future, in what we hope will be a very fruitful relationship between our schools and the local teaching community for a long time to come.”
The PCP is jointly offered by NTUC’s Employment and Employability Institute, the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) and Workforce Singapore (WSG). The participating international schools receive funding for the trainee salaries, and they will employ the trainees for a permanent position or minimum 24 months contract.