My QTLS experience: Charity Burgess

What motivated you to undertake Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status?

After completing my PGCE in 2018, I decided to work abroad immediately. I enjoyed the environment of international schooling and loved working with a wider age range of students. I wanted to complete my QTLS in order to strengthen my portfolio of work and experience for my future career. I wanted to be recognised in the industry as a professional, capable teacher.

Charity Burgess head shot

How did you find the process and what did you like about it?

I enjoyed the development activities I did, and thoroughly enjoyed all of the doors it opened! I found that completing one activity with supported reading led me to explore other ideas for activities. I felt inspired by teaching – especially the theoretical side – all over again.


What has undertaking QTLS taught you about yourself?

Undertaking QTLS has given me a much more in depth and rounded sense of my strengths as an educator, and areas I need to continue to work on. It has given me a wealth of feedback from other professionals due to the formation process, so I can have a clear view of where I am as a teacher.


What impact has QTLS had on your practice and learners?

I believe my professional formation has absolutely impacted my practice for the better. It made me analyse the areas of my teaching I could improve upon, and practical ways to implement changes. For example, I have a strong interest in assessment for learning and the importance of learners knowing how they can improve. By assessing my peers in other subjects, I was able to identify ways in which they have embedded ongoing assessment in their teaching and constructed my own way of doing so. This helped the learners have a clearer understanding of how to improve in their theory or practical grades - and gave me an idea of what areas their knowledge needed to be built upon.

What impact has QTLS had on your organisation?

Working with other teachers, including those in other departments, was an insightful and exciting experience. It was a great chance to create relationships across the school, and I learnt a great deal from my mentor. I also feel I was able to contribute my new ideas to the department to help us better identify students that may need future support.


What are you going to do next and how will you continue to develop your practice?

My plan going forward is to continue my CPD diary with the SET online tool. I plan to re-assess myself against the Professional Standards and identify two more areas to improve in the next year. I believe part of being a teacher and a dual professional is to never stop learning. I am also reading some new books to keep furthering my knowledge - at the moment I am enjoying ‘Classroom Behaviour’ by Bill Rogers. 


What advice would you give teachers/trainers who are thinking of undertaking QTLS?

I think it is a really invaluable experience and one that would greatly improve your practice in a meaningful and authentic way, if you put your all into it. It requires your time and effort, but if channelled positively it is a very rewarding experience. I also feel it could open up future opportunities in other settings for teachers and educators.


Teacher Helping A Student In A Digital Class

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QTLS is the badge of professionalism for post-14 education and training. It’s aimed at helping you advance your career and to demonstrate your expertise and experience to your colleagues, employers and learners.

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