“The support you get from Gateway Alliance doesn’t stop”

Category: Case study

Tracy Cirin, Former Gateway Alliance Trainee 2018-2019

I am currently a Year 5 teacher, having completed my PGCE year through the School Direct Route with the Gateway Alliance. When I was a child, my dream job was to be a teacher, however, for a variety of reasons, I didn’t achieve this until I was 40! After graduating, I had a successful career in retail management for 14 years and during this time, had 3 children. When my twin girls started Primary School, I took the opportunity to follow my dream and completed an NVQ in childcare and worked at a pre-school for 4 years. In this time, I realised that working with children and making a difference in their lives was what I was supposed to be doing, hence where I am now!

Whenever I speak to others about training to be a teacher with a family to care for as well (twin girls who were 8 and a 10 year old son) some people can’t believe this was ever possible. I try to explain that anything is possible if you want it enough, life is too short to have regrets. The Gateway Alliance are a very supportive group of people who have vast expertise in teacher training.

They also recognise that we are all human beings and support in any way they can to make the journey into teaching as smooth as it can be. It is a testament to them that I completed the year and fulfilled my dream of becoming a primary school teacher!

Gateway Alliance have great partnerships with schools in Warwickshire, allowing me the opportunity to spend time in schools with experienced teachers and mentors who supported me all of the way. The programme also allowed me to get an insight into school life and the challenges of teaching, which I could deal with or observe teachers dealing with, to give me the tools that I needed when I now face these situations in the classroom. Alongside this, I have made friends for life who were part of my Gateway Alliance training group- people who understand you are having a bad day or help to celebrate your successes, even the small ones, such as when you have finished marking your first set of books!

The support you get from Gateway Alliance doesn’t stop when you complete the course either. I am still in contact with them and when I have a query or need a support with something, they are always available – nothing is ever too much trouble. 

I am very thankful to Gateway Alliance for all their support, but also their caring attitude towards trainees. The experiences they have provided me with have allowed me to follow my dream of being a teacher, a job where I can have an impact on other people’s lives and support them in achieving their dreams. This teacher training route is one that I strongly recommend.

Whether you’re a career changer, graduate or are currently working in a support capacity within school, we can provide you with the best possible training experience to equip you with the skills, knowledge, experience and confidence to be a fantastic teacher. Train to teach with Gateway Alliance.