Why Train With Us?

We believe that we are providing a unique opportunity to work within some amazing departments within our fantastic Dacorum schools.

As an Alliance we are operating a “Centre of Excellence” model where, in order to ensure that our trainees receive the best mentoring and support, we will only place trainees in departments and schools that have consistently demonstratedTef gold badge excellence in their practice. This will mean that trainees will be mentored by experienced staff and will benefit from being surrounded and supported by outstanding teachers.

We are supported and guided by the University of Hertfordshire who ensure that all trainees receive the level of support appropriate to their level of experience, ability and confidence. 


  • An opportunity to work with some amazing students in some fantastic schools
  • (It is a national requirement that each trainee does a minimum of two placements in contrasting schools during their Initial Teacher Education)
  • The course covers professional learning and subject knowledge, preparing you to meet the needs of individual learners by developing awareness of areas such as behaviour management assessment, learning and diversity
  • An opportunity to work locally within Dacorum
  • The expectation (but no guarantee) of employment within a DSA school
  • Qualification awarded by The University of Hertfordshire
  • Training and support provided by the UH
  • Learning from outstanding mentors and departments
  • Ongoing CPD opportunities (both within the school and across) the DSA

Testimony from trainee Caroline King

Name - Caroline KingKing caroline miss english

Age - 28

Subject - English 

School - Tring School

Why did you decide to pursue teaching as a career?

After graduating from my Master’s, I took on a couple of part-time jobs and started to privately tutor students who were approaching their English GCSEs. I began to find that the tutoring gave me a renewed sense of purpose and reward, which made me wish to pursue teaching as a full time career.

Why did you choose the DTSA and the School Direct route?

I felt that the School Direct route would give me the best hands-on experience of teaching. The DSA not only encompassed many of my local schools but has an excellent reputation for supporting trainee teachers.

How have you found the support provided by the school and the university?

My training school has been a haven of support for me. My Teacher Mentor has given me a shoulder to cry on on countless occasions, as well as some of the best advice which has made my overall training journey more manageable. My tutors at the university have been both understanding and encouraging, and have made the academic side of the training much more straightforward than I was initially worried it would be.

Would you recommend this route to others? What should potential applicants be aware of?

I would highly recommend this route. However, potential applicants should be aware that it can be quite a culture shock if you have not stepped foot into a classroom since you were a student yourself! In addition, although the workload is manageable, you need to be disciplined and accept that there will be times when you have to bring your work home with you.

Top tips for success?

  • Get 8 hours of sleep a night 
  • Carve out time for friends and family
  • Get tasks done within a few days of receiving them
  • Establish firm routines in your classes as soon as possible
  • Enjoy it!

Testimony from trainee Cara Williams

Williams cara miss peName - Cara Williams

Age - 24

Subject - Physical Education

School - Tring School 

Why did you decide to pursue teaching as a career?

I have always loved sport and teaching sport, especially getting children to enjoy and participate in sport. I want to inspire others to participate in physical activity in order to create lifelong values for a healthy lifestyle. My passion for teaching and helping every child to achieve their own personal best is the reason I decided to pursue a career in teaching. 

Why did you choose the DTSA and the School Direct route?

I went on the School Direct Route because I wanted to be practically involved in a school from the word go. I decided that if I was mainly based in a school I would be able to grow in confidence from the support. I choose DTSA due to their reputation of schools and support for teacher training. 

How have you found the support provided by the school and the university?

The support from my main school has been brilliant, my mentor, professional mentor, department and other colleagues have been so supportive and encouraging through my training year. University has also been very supportive for my training year. 

Would you recommend this route to others? What should potential applicants be aware of?

I would definitely recommend this route, spending a lot of time at one school means you can get into school life and gain confidence and responsibility around school.  Although you would like to say yes to every opportunity at school make sure you prioritise your teacher training and leave enough time to get everything done as well as leaving time to relax and do things your enjoy. 

Top tips for success?

Enjoy it! It can be easy to get stressed by all the work but try to enjoy it. This is an amazing career to be in and you are there for the children, so enjoy yourself as this will be a better experience for you and for the children.

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