Nitesh Gor is founding-CEO of the UK’s Avanti Schools Trust, a multi-academy trust that has both faith (Hindu) and non-denominational schools. In this exclusive Guest Op-Ed, he gives an insight into Avanti’s new partnership with Teach First and what it means for a well-rounded teacher training targeted at the British Indian diaspora and beyond.
Avanti exists to help each person become a well-rounded human being through spiritual insight, character formation and educational excellence, and so make the world a better place, and there can be no better way for this to manifest than in the development of teachers. For this reason, Avanti is excited to be partnering with Teach First to launch its School-Centred Initial Teacher Training (SCITT) programme from September 2023 across its family of schools.
Avanti schools include the only Hindu faith schools in the country and offer a unique curriculum that includes meditation, yoga, personal development, and a bespoke approach to philosophy, religion and ethics.
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Up to 50 graduates will have the opportunity to train to teach in one of our schools, benefitting from the highest quality, evidence-informed teacher training curriculum delivered by Avanti Schools Trust practitioners. Teach First is one of the leading providers of teacher training in the UK and has over 20 years’ experience in the field, addressing educational and social disadvantage by training teachers of the highest calibre. The course is accredited by Sheffield Hallam University and, on completion, our trainees will gain a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) and Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).
The SCITT programme is ideal for people who are eager to make a difference in their community from day one. Trainees will spend four days each week in their school and one day on their curriculum development, through a combination of independent guided study, virtual workshops and ‘in-person’ live training events. The research-led programme provides plenty of practical experience, along with subject specific training and a deep understanding of effective teaching methods. Through a carefully sequenced curriculum the programme develops trainees’ knowledge gradually over time, enabling them to be fully supported by subject mentors in school. Over the course of the year, they will gain increasing levels of independence in the classroom as they acquire the knowledge and skills to become exceptional teachers.
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Teaching is a highly valued profession that plays a crucial role in shaping the minds of young people. Avanti teachers create a positive and inspiring learning environment for their pupils where they feel safe, valued and motivated to succeed. Through the unique Avanti curriculum, our schools ensure every pupil can achieve more than just educational excellence and that their character formation and spiritual insight are both nurtured with equal value. Our trainees will be fully immersed in every aspect of this in their schools.
Avanti is offering teacher training in primary education and in English, maths and science at secondary level. The SCITT programme is a full-time course and participants qualify as students for the year. They can access a wide range of financial support including bursaries of up to £29 000 for secondary science courses. International applicants must have the right to work in the UK before applying, and all applicants must have qualifications equivalent to GCSE at a grade 4 (C) in English and mathematics in addition to A Levels (or equivalent) and an undergraduate degree.
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Nitesh Gor is founding-CEO of Avanti Schools Trust, a multi-academy trust that has both faith (Hindu) and non-denominational schools. His previous experience encompasses CEO and director roles across the exploration and investment banking industries and a broad business strategy background gained with leading management consultancies. He is a published author – ‘Dharma of Capitalism’ – and has a forthcoming title on universal spirituality. Nitesh has an MBA from London Business School and an undergraduate degree from the University of London. He was awarded an OBE for Services to Education.