PEOPLE in the North-East who are seeking a more rewarding and challenging career are being encouraged to find out more about teaching.

To help high-quality career changers and graduates explore whether teaching is right for them, the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) is hosting a Train to Teach roadshow at the Centre for Life in Times Square, Newcastle on Saturday February 1.

Charlie Taylor, chief executive of NCTL, said: “New Year is traditionally a time when people consider switching career and we are encouraging more top graduates who are looking for a more rewarding career, or are simply looking for a new challenge, to consider teaching. It is important that excellent professionals already in the workplace realise that teaching is not the sole preserve of new graduates – in fact, some of our best teachers started out their working life in other fields. We have therefore put in place a series of events to help talented career changers and new graduates alike to get a better picture of the rewards and opportunities a career in teaching offers.

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“What is particularly exciting about career changers, whether they are from accountancy or industry, law or business, is the experience as well as the expertise they can bring into schools. We already have some of the best teachers working in our classrooms today but we want to encourage even more outstanding candidates into the profession who have the passion and potential to become exceptional teachers and who can bring subjects like maths and science to life for the next generation.

“Teaching has changed - the opportunities for the most able graduates have never been better with substantial bursaries and scholarships, high-quality training and excellent career progression prospects. In addition, starting salaries in teaching are higher than many would think.” There are a number of routes into teaching for career changers including university-based courses where trainees learn in a top university and spend time training in a school. Another popular route for career changers is School Direct , which has places available in some of the best primary and secondary schools across England.

Incentives include a salary for graduates with three or more years’ work experience, who can apply for the employment-based School Direct (salaried) route. All other graduates can apply for the School Direct fee-based programme or university-based teacher training - well qualified candidates could be eligible for a substantial tax-free bursary of up to £20,000 or a scholarship of up to £25,000.

Those interested in becoming a teacher can visit or call the Teaching Line on 0800 389 2500.

The Newcastle event starts at 9.30am and runs until 5pm.