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Welsh Government announces new agreement with OU for part-time teacher training

The Open University in Wales is delighted to have been awarded a contract with the Welsh Government to deliver the brand new part-time and work-based teacher training programme in Wales.

In a radical approach to teacher training, the new part-time PGCE and Employment Based Route would enable student teachers to maintain their current commitments, including employment and income, whilst studying to be a teacher.

These will provide a high quality alternative to full-time study and could allow students to interact with their lecturers and fellow students online, removing the need to travel to attend university. 

Good news! You can now register your interest in the PGCE course. Email

The Open University will develop a bespoke programme for Wales, available bilingually, and designed to equip teachers with the knowledge and skills needed to deliver the new curriculum. A pilot scheme will start in February 2020 for a small cohort of students to undertake work-based teacher training in science. In the following October, further subjects will be added as well a Primary teacher training route.

"Our schools want to attract the best and brightest to work with their pupils." said Louise Casella, Director of The OU in Wales. "These new programmes will help students from all parts of Wales, with a variety of experiences, to upskill or reskill and become teachers. It will open up the profession as a career path for people who want to stay in their communities and study, or continue working while they learn."

"Students will have access to our unique supported online learning and vast library resources, our committed student support team in Cardiff, and first-class careers advice when they graduate. We’ll also set up close links with schools across Wales so that our trainees have the best possible experience in a work setting and mentors to help them through their training."

"This year, The OU celebrates its 50th anniversary. Ever since we were created, we’ve used technology and innovation to open up learning to people and communities across the UK and the world. Our teacher training package has been created in this spirit."

This exciting new programme will allow trainee teachers to study while working or balancing other life commitments. By mixing the best of new technology and flexible training, it will break down the barriers which have prevented many from becoming teachers.

I'm delighted that the OU has won this contract from the Welsh Government. They bring decades of experience in innovation, widening participation and teacher education. I am confident that this initiative will reach all parts of Wales, delivering a whole new generation of teachers from different backgrounds. This can only improve the learning experience of pupils in schools and increase the diversity of our teaching workforce.

It will help widen participation in teaching, enriching the workforce by increasing diversity and allowing people with work and life experience to bring those qualities to the profession.

Kirsty Williams, Education Minister

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Open University in Wales media enquiries:

Rhodri Davies 
Communications Manager,
Telephone: 029 2167 4532

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