The Open University (OU) is to withdraw from the PGCE qualification that is available in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and the associated PGDE qualification in Scotland.
The decision will come into effect following the January and March 2014 intake dates. Existing students and those who are enrolled for the final two course start dates will be able to complete their PGCE course and will be unaffected by the change. Existing School Direct commitments will also be honoured.
The decision represents a withdrawal by the OU of its QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) qualifications and all subject lines offered in the PGCE programme. Instead the OU will focus on sustaining and building on the strengths of its education and schools-targeted curriculum. The University will continue to offer undergraduate degrees in Early Years and Primary Teaching and Learning and a Masters in Education. Further developments in the Education curriculum will be investigated as well as the provision of OERs (open educational resources) in the coming months.
The PGCE will continue to be delivered as normal between now and 2016.
Professor Mary Kellett, Dean and Director of Studies in the Faculty of Education and Language Studies said:
“As an Ofsted-rated “outstanding” provider of initial teacher education we are proud to have offered a first-rate teacher training resource for thousands of teachers across the UK, thanks to a superb staff team here in the Faculty and in our partner schools.
“While this decision sees the end of our PGCE and PGDE qualifications, we remain committed to continuing to offering first-class teaching in education, both undergraduate and graduate level. I can reassure our students and those who wish to embark on the PGCE course on the January and March enrolment dates that the excellence in teaching they have come to expect from the OU will continue for the full duration of their course.”
Applications will be accepted until the end of November for registration in January or March 2014. March 2014 will be the last registration date for our core allocation, but arrangements made with schools for 2014-15 under the School Direct Scheme will be honoured.