Dip Diary 8 – Experience of recent NQTs

I’ve been receiving lots of messages from newly qualified teachers about completing the Dip/ Droichead process. I asked my followers to contribute to some guest blogposts on their personal experience of the dip/droichead process and to offer any advice to NQT’s. I was overwhelmed by the amount of teachers who agreed to answer a list of questions and I hope their experience will help with your NQT journey!

What course did you complete? When did you qualify?

I completed the PME with Hibernia College Dublin and qualified in May 2017.

How did you find the job search?

I found applying for interviews very defeating. I applied for over 100 jobs before getting an interview. I got a year long contract from the interview though, completed my dip and have a job for next year too. There was plenty of subbing available though if I didn’t have that job.

Any advice for teachers currently job hunting?

Don’t give up. Apply, apply and keep applying. There is plenty of subbing so if you don’t have a job for the beginning of the year don’t be disheartened. A job will come layer in the year and once you get known in different schools.

What role did you have? (If mainstream – what class?)

This year I was a learning support teacher and next year  I will be teaching first class.

Did you complete the traditional dip with an inspector or the Droichead process?

Droichead process.

How did you find the process?

I found the process very good. There was a lot less pressure and stress compared to the traditional dip. I got to decide exactly when my mentors came into my classroom, what lesson I wanted viewed and had so much support from colleagues throughout the year. I got to observe other teachers teaching, had weekly meetings with mentor to discuss any issues I had and did not have a stranger looking through my plans with a fine tooth comb.

Did you have a mentor or a go-to person to support you in school?

Yes. We had weekly meetings which were very helpful.

What was the most difficult part?

I did not find it difficult, I felt very supported. I think I would have been very stressed and unwell if I had to complete the traditional dip.

How many hours did you do preparing/planning etc.?

Not long as I was in learning support so had less plans to do and I tweaked them slightly each week instead of inventing the wheel over and over. At the beginning of the year I spent hours writing plans and by the end of the year I spent about one to two hours.