Studying while working
What is Further Forces?
If you’re leaving the military services – or you've left within the past 5 years – and want to train as a Further Education (FE) teacher in England, our fully-funded Further Forces programme is the perfect opportunity for you.
Commissioned by the Ministry of Defence, Department for Education, Gatsby Charitable Foundation and Education and Training Foundation (ETF), Further Forces gives you the chance to work towards a Certificate in Education or PGCE – while learning on the job, and working with a mentor who'll support your move into teaching.
The Further Forces programme is designed to cater for the specific needs of ex-military personnel, so no prior teaching qualifications or experience is necessary – but all applicants should have an interest in becoming a teacher of students aged 16 and over.
And most importantly, because the Further Forces programme is fully-funded, there are no costs for you to pay.
How to apply
To join our Further Forces programme, you’ll need GCSE Maths and English at grade C or above (or the equivalent), and demonstrable technical skills or professional competence.
Before you start teaching, you'll also need to undergo a DBS (criminal records) check, to show that you have no disqualifying criminal convictions.
But the first step in the application process is to contact us and register your interest.
Please note, although we accept applications throughout the duration of the programme, applying as soon as possible is strongly recommended, as places are limited.
As an Officer in the Navy, I specialised in telecommunications systems and information systems. I have always had a drive to help others to learn and I soon realised that I had developed a passion to teach.
After you apply
Once we receive your application, we'll contact you to discuss your interests and assess your current skills and experience.
If we decide you're ready to move onto the next stage, you'll begin your training with a series of workbooks that are designed to help you into FE employment.
Next, we’ll match you up with our list of technical vacancies in FE providers, and prepare you for the interview process for whichever teaching job is best-suited to you.
And once you're placed in a teaching role, you’ll work to gain a nationally-recognised teaching qualification – either a Certificate in Education or PGCE – with the support of your appointed mentor.
What can I teach?
We work with the Association of Colleges and the University of Brighton on this programme, which funds trainee teachers in the following technical subject areas:
- Agriculture, Environmental & Animal Care
- Business and Administrative
- Catering & Hospitality
- Childcare & Education
- Creative & Design
- Engineering & Manufacturing
- Hair & Beauty
- Health & Science
- Legal, Finance & Accounting
- Protective Services
- Sales, Marketing & Procurement
- Social Care
- Transport & Logistics
I served as a Combat Medical Technician in the Army. The skills and knowledge gained in this role, coupled with my degree in sports science, meant that I was well placed to embark upon a career in Further Education teaching and training.
Important information for FE providers and Commanding Officers
If you’re leading in an FE provider (colleges, independent training companies and organisations who have substantial in-house training programmes), our Further Forces programme can help you find recruits for the ‘hard to fill’ teaching roles in technical education.
You can contact us with your technical vacancies, and let us match you up with an appropriate service leaver; if we do not have an immediate match, we will keep you updated on new recruits. You’ll be able to interview candidates, and, if successful, you can recruit the candidate into a salaried post (usually full-time or possibly part-time- 0.8 FTE). Your candidate will also be enrolled on a teacher training programme delivered by either the Association of Colleges or the University of Portsmouth.
Alternatively, if you have found a suitable service leaver for a role in your organisation, we can provide funding to support their training and mentoring.
There is no cost to the FE provider; the total cost of training, including mentoring support, is provided by the ETF and the Gatsby Charitable Foundation.
By sharing the Further Forces programme, you can support your service leavers in their transition to civilian life, in line with Ministry of Defence intentions. You’ll also be helping address a critical shortage of technical skills in the UK.