What does hosting an ITT placement involve?

School Placements

During their training, trainees must complete at least 2 school placements. Trainee teachers need a variety of experience in schools to enable them to meet the Teachers’ Standards. In their school placements trainees need to:

  • teach children and young people in their specified age range and from different backgrounds

  • gain experience of different approaches to teaching, school organisation and management

While on placement, trainees should spend a minimum of 15 hours per week in a classroom setting. This could include:

  • observing

  • teaching

  • co-teaching

Placements take place at different times during the school year. Accredited ITT providers will discuss the different placement options, and payments received for placing a trainee, with placement schools.

Offer an ITT Placement

To offer a trainee teacher an ITT placement in your school, you need to partner with an accredited ITT provider. The 5 local accredited ITT providers for Buckinghamshire for September 2024 onwards are listed here:

Accredited ITT Providers in Buckinghamshire


Before the ITT Placement Begins

Schools can host placements for trainees who are on a:

  • fee-funded (non-salaried) route

  • salaried route

  • postgraduate apprenticeship route

Most trainees undertake a fee-funded (non-salaried) ITT route. This means that the trainee funds the course, often with the support of tuition fees and maintenance loans. Trainees on fee-funded routes will need to complete 2 contrasting school placements. For some subjects there are bursaries and scholarships for eligible trainees.

Trainees on salaried and postgraduate apprenticeship routes are paid a salary while they train to teach. They are typically employed by the school. These trainees will also have a shorter contrasting placement at another school that is typically half a term in length. Schools who have a teacher vacancy may choose to employ a trainee on a salaried route. For the salaried route, the DfE offers grant funding to contribute to the trainee’s salary and training costs in certain subjects. This is paid to the accredited ITT provider, and they are responsible for ensuring that all funding designated to support salary costs reaches the employing school. For more information, refer to Funding: initial teacher training.


Assign a School-Based Mentor

Placement schools are required to provide the trainee with a school-based mentor to support their learning and development during their training. Many schools find that having staff involved in mentoring trainees and new teachers has a positive impact on teaching practice across the school. Reflecting on and articulating what makes effective teaching on a regular basis is highly beneficial for school improvement.

If you’re offering an ITT placement from September 2024, you’ll need to be able to assign a school-based mentor who can spend at least 1.5 hours with their trainee per week. ITT providers may have different models for how they will advise schools to incorporate the 1.5 hours of mentoring per week. Each school-based mentor must complete up to 20 hours of initial mentor training with an accredited ITT provider (followed by 6 hours of refresher training in future years). Each ITT provider will run their own mentor training and this training will help mentors understand:

  • what’s involved in the mentor role and the skills they need

  • the ITT Core Content Framework (CCF) and its underpinning evidence

  • the ITT curriculum which the trainee will be following

Mentors do not need to complete the training before they can begin to support trainees. However, the training should be aligned to meet the trainees’ needs throughout their ITT course. Accredited ITT providers can also consider any relevant prior learning that mentors have completed including as an Early Career Framework (ECF) mentor. This may reduce the total hours of training a mentor needs to complete.

Schools will be able to claim funding for the actual hours of training undertaken by the mentor, to a maximum of 20 hours. Information will be published by the DfE on how schools can apply for funding. This mentor funding is in addition to the funding that schools receive from accredited ITT providers for hosting a trainee placement.

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Lead Mentors

The accredited ITT provider will allocate their own lead mentors to support the delivery of their ITT courses. A core role of a lead mentor is to:

  • support and train school-based mentors

  • supervise school-based mentors

  • make sure all trainees are receiving sufficient mentoring and support during their placements

  • check placements align with their trainee curriculum and the ITT Core Content Framework


During the ITT Placement

Every trainee will receive 1.5 hours per week of mentoring support. This is to ensure that a trainees’ in-school, practical experiences are coherent with the ITT provider’s training curriculum. Mentors have a critical role in providing trainees with feedback and support. Mentors should use evidence to provide a structured process for improving the trainee’s practice and understanding of key concepts.