OLCreate: Supporting Dyslexia Inclusive Practice 6 Learning for sustainability: 6.2 Five roles of Support for learning teacher/pupil support teacher

The Importance of Teachers

Teachers play a pivotal role in shaping the future of a nation. They are the foundation of education, imparting knowledge and values to the next generation. Their significance goes beyond the classroom, influencing society as a whole.

Teachers inspire, guide, and motivate students to reach their full potential. They are not just educators but also mentors, helping students develop critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and a thirst for learning.

Furthermore, teachers contribute to the development of a well-rounded individual, nurturing not only academic growth but also fostering social and emotional development. Their impact extends far beyond academic achievement, influencing students’ character, ethics, and values.

In essence, teachers are the driving force behind education, and their role in society cannot be overstated. They are instrumental in shaping the leaders, thinkers, and innovators of tomorrow.

Qualifications and Training

Teacher - Wikipedia

Teaching is a noble profession that requires a specific set of qualifications and rigorous training to ensure that educators are well-prepared to meet the diverse needs of students. In the United Kingdom, becoming a qualified teacher involves a comprehensive process that encompasses both academic qualifications and practical training.

Academic Qualifications

To embark on a teaching career in the UK, one typically begins with obtaining a bachelor’s degree in education or a related field. This undergraduate degree provides the foundational knowledge necessary to understand educational theories, child development, and curriculum design.

However, it’s important to note that many aspiring teachers pursue their bachelor’s degrees in subjects they wish to teach. These individuals then undertake postgraduate teacher training courses to gain the necessary qualifications. This route is known as “postgraduate initial teacher training” (PGCE) or “school-centered initial teacher training” (SCITT).

Teacher Training Routes

There are several routes to becoming a qualified teacher in the UK:

  • PGCE: This is a popular route for those with a bachelor’s degree in a relevant subject. It combines academic study with practical teaching experience in schools.
  • SCITT: SCITT programs are school-based and offer hands-on experience from day one. They are often chosen by those who prefer a more practical approach.
  • School Direct: This route allows aspiring teachers to work and train within a school, providing a deep immersion into the teaching environment.

Qualification Requirements

Regardless of the chosen route, prospective teachers must meet certain criteria, including:

Academic Requirements: Applicants typically need at least a 2:2 degree classification or equivalent in their chosen subject.
DBS Check: A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check is mandatory to ensure the candidate’s suitability to work with children.
Professional Skills Tests: Candidates must pass numeracy and literacy skills tests to demonstrate their competence in these areas.
Interview: Prospective teachers are often required to attend interviews, where they showcase their passion for teaching and their suitability for the profession.

Upon successful completion of the training program and meeting all qualification requirements, individuals become qualified teachers in the UK. Continuous professional development is essential throughout a teacher’s career to stay updated with the latest teaching methodologies and educational trends, ensuring they provide the best possible learning experiences for their students.

Responsibilities and Duties

Teaching is a multifaceted profession with a wide range of responsibilities and duties that extend beyond the classroom. Teachers in the UK play a crucial role in shaping the education and development of their students. Here is an in-depth look at their key responsibilities and duties:

1. Curriculum Planning and Delivery

Curriculum planning: Teachers are responsible for designing and organizing the curriculum to meet the specific learning objectives and needs of their students. This involves selecting appropriate teaching materials, resources, and assessment methods.

Lesson delivery: They deliver engaging and informative lessons, effectively conveying subject matter and fostering student understanding.

2. Classroom Management

Creating a conducive learning environment: Teachers establish a positive and safe classroom environment where students can learn and grow academically and emotionally.

Managing behavior: They implement behavior management strategies to maintain discipline and ensure a respectful and inclusive classroom atmosphere.

3. Assessment and Evaluation

Assessment: Teachers regularly assess students’ progress through quizzes, tests, assignments, and other forms of evaluation. They use this data to adapt teaching methods and provide targeted support.

Feedback: Providing constructive feedback to students, parents, and guardians is an essential part of the teaching role, helping students improve their performance.

4. Individualized Support

Identifying learning needs: Teachers recognize the diverse learning needs of their students and tailor instruction to accommodate those needs, including students with special educational requirements.

Supporting struggling students: They provide extra help, tutoring, or access to additional resources for students who require additional support to succeed academically.

5. Collaboration and Professional Development

Collaboration: Teachers work closely with colleagues, parents, and school staff to coordinate efforts and enhance the overall educational experience.

Professional development: They engage in continuous learning to stay updated on educational best practices, attend workshops, and pursue further qualifications.

6. Safeguarding and Well-being

Safeguarding: Teachers are responsible for identifying and reporting any safeguarding concerns to ensure the welfare and safety of students.

Promoting well-being: They support students’ emotional and social well-being, offering guidance and assistance when needed.

7. Record Keeping and Administration

Record keeping: Teachers maintain accurate records of student attendance, performance, and behavior, which are essential for school administration and reporting to parents.

In conclusion, teachers in the UK carry out multifaceted responsibilities and duties that encompass not only academic instruction but also the overall well-being and development of their students. Their dedication and expertise are fundamental in nurturing future generations and ensuring a strong educational foundation.

Challenges Faced by Teachers

Teaching is a rewarding profession, but it also comes with its share of challenges. Teachers in the UK encounter various difficulties in their day-to-day work that can impact both their well-being and the quality of education they provide. Here are some of the key challenges faced by teachers:

1. Workload

Heavy workload: Teachers often juggle numerous responsibilities, from lesson planning and grading assignments to attending meetings and handling administrative tasks. This workload can be overwhelming and lead to burnout.

2. Diverse Student Needs

Diversity: In today’s classrooms, teachers encounter students with diverse learning needs, including those with special educational requirements, English as a second language (ESL) learners, and gifted students. Meeting the unique needs of each student can be challenging.

3. Behavior Management

Challenging behavior: Teachers sometimes deal with disruptive or challenging behavior from students, which can disrupt the learning environment and require effective classroom management strategies.

4. Limited Resources

Resource constraints: Many schools face budget limitations, leading to inadequate teaching materials, outdated textbooks, and a lack of technological resources. Teachers often have to be resourceful in making the most of what’s available.

5. Assessment Pressure

High-stakes assessments: The pressure to prepare students for standardized tests can be immense. Teachers must strike a balance between teaching to the test and providing a well-rounded education.

6. Parental Involvement

Parent-teacher relationships: Building and maintaining positive relationships with parents and guardians can be challenging, especially when addressing academic concerns or behavior issues.

7. Technological Advancements

Technology integration: Keeping up with rapidly evolving technology and integrating it effectively into the classroom can be daunting for some teachers.

8. Professional Development

Continuous learning: Staying updated with the latest teaching methodologies and educational trends requires ongoing professional development. Finding the time and resources for this can be challenging.

9. Well-being and Mental Health

Teacher well-being: Balancing the demands of the job with personal well-being is crucial. Teachers may experience stress, burnout, and mental health challenges as a result of their responsibilities.

10. Policy Changes

Policy shifts: Frequent changes in educational policies and curriculum standards can create uncertainty and require teachers to adapt quickly.

Despite these challenges, teachers in the UK continue to make a profound impact on the lives of their students. They work tirelessly to provide quality education, support student development, and prepare the next generation for a brighter future.

Support and Resources

Teaching in the UK involves a network of support and access to various resources to help educators excel in their roles. The education system recognizes the importance of providing teachers with the tools and assistance they need to be effective in the classroom. Here is an overview of the support and resources available to teachers:

1. Professional Development

Continuous learning: Teachers have access to a range of professional development opportunities, including workshops, seminars, and online courses. These help them stay current with teaching methodologies and best practices.

2. Mentorship Programs

Mentor teachers: Newly qualified teachers often benefit from mentorship programs where experienced educators provide guidance and support as they transition into the profession.

3. Educational Materials

Teaching resources: Schools and educational organizations provide teachers with access to a wealth of teaching materials, such as textbooks, educational software, and classroom supplies.

4. Special Education Support

Inclusion services: To assist in meeting the diverse needs of students, special education programs and support staff are available to help teachers create inclusive classrooms.

5. Behavior Management Strategies

Training and resources: Teachers receive training and resources to effectively manage classroom behavior, ensuring a conducive learning environment for all students.

6. Parental Engagement

Parent-teacher associations: Many schools have active parent-teacher associations (PTAs) that facilitate communication between teachers and parents, fostering a sense of community.

7. Technology Integration

Technology support: Schools often provide technical support and training to help teachers integrate technology into their teaching methods.

8. Well-being Initiatives

Teacher well-being: Schools recognize the importance of teacher well-being and may offer well-being programs, counseling services, and stress management resources.

9. Curriculum Support

Curriculum guidance: Teachers receive guidance and support in aligning their teaching with national curriculum standards, ensuring students receive a well-rounded education.

10. Collaboration Opportunities

Collaborative platforms: Teachers can collaborate with colleagues through online platforms and professional networks to share ideas, resources, and strategies.

Overall, the support and resources available to teachers in the UK play a crucial role in enhancing the quality of education and helping educators overcome challenges. This comprehensive system ensures that teachers are well-equipped to provide the best possible learning experiences for their students.

Teacher-Student Relationship

The teacher-student relationship is at the core of effective education in the UK. Building strong and positive relationships between teachers and their students is essential for fostering a conducive learning environment and promoting student success. Here’s an in-depth look at the significance and dynamics of this relationship:

The Significance of Teacher-Student Relationships

Emotional well-being: A supportive teacher-student relationship can significantly impact a student’s emotional well-being. When students feel valued, respected, and cared for by their teachers, they are more likely to thrive both academically and personally.

Student engagement: Positive teacher-student relationships can enhance student engagement and motivation. Students are more likely to actively participate in class and be eager to learn when they have a strong connection with their teacher.

Behavior and classroom management: Effective teacher-student relationships contribute to better behavior management. When students have a positive relationship with their teacher, they are more likely to follow classroom rules and respond positively to disciplinary measures.

Building Positive Teacher-Student Relationships

Open communication: Teachers who encourage open and honest communication with their students create an environment where students feel comfortable sharing their thoughts, concerns, and questions.

Respect and empathy: Treating students with respect and empathy is fundamental. Teachers should acknowledge the uniqueness of each student and show understanding towards their individual needs and challenges.

Active listening: Teachers should actively listen to their students, demonstrating a genuine interest in their opinions and perspectives. This fosters trust and rapport.

Support and encouragement: Providing academic and emotional support to students is essential. Teachers can offer guidance, encouragement, and assistance when students face challenges or need additional help.

Challenges in Teacher-Student Relationships

Diversity: In diverse classrooms, teachers must navigate cultural, linguistic, and social differences among students to build inclusive relationships.

Behavioral challenges: Dealing with challenging student behavior can strain teacher-student relationships. Effective classroom management strategies are crucial to address such challenges while maintaining a positive rapport.

Benefits of Strong Teacher-Student Relationships

Academic achievement: Research shows that students with strong teacher-student relationships tend to perform better academically and are more likely to graduate from school.

Social and emotional development: Positive relationships with teachers contribute to students’ social and emotional development, helping them develop interpersonal skills and resilience.

Long-term impact: Strong teacher-student relationships can leave a lasting impact on students, influencing their future academic and career choices and even their personal development.

In conclusion, the teacher-student relationship is a vital component of the education system in the UK. It plays a pivotal role in shaping students’ academic success, emotional well-being, and overall development. Building and nurturing these relationships is an ongoing commitment that benefits both teachers and their students.


Here are some frequently asked questions about teaching in the UK:

1. What qualifications do I need to become a teacher in the UK?

Typically, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in education or a related field. Alternatively, you can have a degree in a subject you wish to teach and complete a postgraduate teacher training program.

2. What is the process for teacher certification in the UK?

The process involves completing a teacher training program, meeting qualification requirements, obtaining a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, and passing professional skills tests. Specific requirements may vary depending on the route you choose.

3. What are the different teacher training routes in the UK?

There are several routes, including Postgraduate Initial Teacher Training (PGCE), School-Centered Initial Teacher Training (SCITT), and School Direct. Each has its unique features and requirements.

4. How do teachers handle diverse student needs in the classroom?

Teachers receive training and support to accommodate diverse learning needs, including special educational requirements and English as a second language (ESL) learners. Inclusive teaching strategies are essential.

5. What resources and support are available for teachers in the UK?

Teachers have access to professional development, mentorship programs, educational materials, special education support, behavior management resources, and more to aid them in their roles.

6. How can teachers build positive relationships with their students?

Building positive teacher-student relationships involves open communication, respect, empathy, active listening, and providing support and encouragement.

7. What are the key challenges faced by teachers in the UK?

Challenges include workload, diverse student needs, behavior management, limited resources, assessment pressure, parental involvement, and staying up-to-date with technology and policies.

8. What benefits do strong teacher-student relationships bring?

Strong teacher-student relationships contribute to academic achievement, social and emotional development, and long-term positive impacts on students’ lives.

If you have more questions or need further information, feel free to reach out to educational authorities or institutions for guidance and support.


In conclusion, the role of teachers in the United Kingdom is integral to the nation’s education system and the development of its future generations. Teachers are not only educators but also mentors, guides, and sources of inspiration for students.

Throughout this guide, we have explored the qualifications and training required to become a teacher in the UK, the responsibilities and duties they undertake, the challenges they face, and the support and resources available to them. We have also emphasized the importance of fostering positive teacher-student relationships.

Despite the challenges, the teaching profession remains one of the most rewarding and impactful careers one can pursue. Teachers have the power to shape minds, instill values, and influence the course of a student’s life.

Aspiring educators in the UK should be prepared for a journey that demands dedication, continuous learning, and a commitment to making a difference in the lives of their students. It is a profession that carries great responsibility but also offers immense satisfaction and the opportunity to leave a lasting legacy.

We hope this guide has provided valuable insights into the world of teaching in the UK, helping both aspiring teachers and those interested in understanding the profession better. The future of education in the UK depends on the dedication and expertise of its teachers, who play a pivotal role in shaping a brighter tomorrow.


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