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Early Career Development

Ridgewood School is proud to be involved in the training of new teachers and the development of Early Career Teachers and offers an outstanding programme of support and learning.

We are a partnership school for teacher training for The University of Sheffield and the Doncaster ITT Partnership (DRAFTTs) and work with Ambition Institute to provide support for the development of our Early Career Teachers.

Ridgewood ITT Program

We have developed our own initial teacher training (ITT) programme to run alongside that of those specified by our training partners, to ensure that all trainee teachers can make the most of their placements with us and develop into outstanding teachers.

  • A thorough induction into the school.
  • A dedicated continuing professional development (CPD) programme for trainee teachers, focussing on developing teaching standards through ‘ADAPT’ training – inspired by Tom Sherrington’s Walkthrus.
  • Access to meetings with a range of colleagues in school to support training in all aspects of school life.
  • Dedicated time is given to mentors to meet with trainees, one to one.
  • Support and internal training for mentors ensures that they consistently provide the highest quality support to trainees.

The article linked below shows one of our current teachers explaining why he chose to ‘get into teaching’:

The University of Sheffield 

We work closely with the University of Sheffield to train and develop future outstanding teachers. Trainee teachers work with a dedicated mentor and other professionals in their subject to acquire the classroom skills and pedagogical knowledge required to teach high quality lessons and inspire students. 

  • Provide student teachers with a high quality initial teacher education, equipping them to teach in a wide range of schools across the 11-19 age range.
  • Enable student teachers to demonstrate all the required standards to achieve QTS but also enable them to develop their own individual strengths going beyond the standards.
  • Allow student teachers the opportunity to receive 120 Masters credits which can contribute in the future to an MA, for example the MA in Applied Professional Studies in Education (part-time).
  • Encourage student teachers to take a critically informed interest in educational policies and practice that they encounter both in theory and in practice.
  • Encourage student teachers to be critically reflective about their own practice.
  • Encourage student teachers to take increasing responsibility for their own professional development.
  • Provide student teachers with opportunities both at the university and in schools to work co-operatively with other student teachers and education professionals to develop a wide range of key skills.

If you would like any additional information about the University of Sheffield’s undergraduate or postgraduate courses:


We work closely with DRAFTTs to train and develop future outstanding teachers. The Doncaster ITT Partnership was formed in 2002 to help Doncaster schools recruit, train and retain qualified teachers through ‘home-grown’ schools-based training. Since then the Partnership has trained hundreds of Primary and Secondary teachers and is the only Accredited ITT Provider in Doncaster.

Doncaster schools have worked closely within the Partnership since 2002 and share a collective passion and vision when recruiting and training future teachers for Doncaster. For applicants wishing to gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), Doncaster ITT Partnership schools offer a full training programme which will enable trainee teachers to access a range of schools who have identified excellent practice. Training schools have high quality, trained mentors with significant experience of supporting trainee teachers and who, with the support of Partnership Tutors, are able to cross-moderate training within the Partnership of Doncaster schools to ensure that all students have the best possible opportunity to achieve QTS.

Working with the University of Hull, trainee teachers can choose to progress through an optional programme of part-time study to the award of 60 Masters Credits all at Level 7 and to the award of PGCE, in addition to achieving Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

For further information please contact the ITT partnership:

Further Early Career Development

Ridgewood ECF Programme 

Since September 2020, we have been taking part in the early roll out of the Early Career Framework (ECF).

From September 2021 early career teachers (ECTs - formerly referred to as newly qualified teachers (NQTs) in year one of teaching practice, and recently qualified teachers (RQTs) in year 2 of teaching practice) will complete a 2-year statutory induction. After 2 years, ECTs will be assessed against the Teacher Standards to determine if they have passed induction. The ECF underpins an entitlement to a fully funded, two-year package of structured training and support for ECTs linked to the best available research evidence. The package of reforms will ensure that ECTs have dedicated time set aside to focus on their development.

The Early Career Framework:

  • Compiled by an expert advisory group with input from teachers, school leaders, academics, and experts.
  • Content underpinned by evidence.
  • Independently assessed and endorsed by the Education Endowment Foundation.

The Department for Education have committed to:

  • Funding and guaranteeing an additional 5% timetable reduction in the second year of teaching, for all ECTs. ECTs will continue to have a 10% timetable reduction in their first year of induction.
  • Creating high quality, freely available ECF curricula and training materials.
  • Establishing full, high quality ECF training programmes.
  • Funding time for mentors to support ECTs.
  • Fully funded mentor training.

We have partnered with Ambition Institute to provide support and resources for this programme, alongside our own internal development.

The key features of our own additional programme for ECTs are detailed below:

  • Provide ECTs with fortnightly training sessions using our ‘ADAPT’ model to cover gaps in the ECF delivery.
  • Provide support and training for ECTs and mentors.
  • Quality assure, on a weekly basis, all documentation completed by ECTs and mentors.
  • Routinely drop-in on ECTs to provide further coaching and to quality assure teaching.
  • A dedicated ECT Policy.

National Teacher Accreditation 

We work with the National Teacher Accreditation (NTA) as the appropriate body for induction.

The NTA’s values align with those of Ridgewood and are detailed below:

  • Honesty - We give honest and realistic support and advice to ensure the required standards are met at all times.
  • Integrity - We give independent and impartial support and advice throughout the whole process, to ensure the required standards are met at all times.
  • Accountability - We hold statutory responsibility for the overseeing of the induction process and ensuring the required standards are met at all times.
  • Empowerment - We provide resources and a framework to quality assure the induction process.

The NTA ensure that ECTs receive:

  • An Induction Tutor to support and mentor on a day-to-day basis.
  • An Individualised programme of support.
  • A 10% reduction in their timetable.
  • Weekly mentor meetings.
  • Development plans and support to meet the targets set in these.
  • A minimum of six formal lesson observations (one per half term).
  • A review meeting every half term.
  • A meeting to formally assess their progress and to complete the NTA Assessment Form every term.

Ambition Institute

To support the delivery of the ECF, Ambition provide the following:

  • Weekly reading for the ECT and mentor on areas of the Early Career Framework (so to cover the whole framework over the two-year induction, meeting statutory requirements).
  • Training for ECTs and mentors on how to give and receive instructional coaching.
  • Online platform for recording feedback and tracking progress from weekly instructional coaching drop-ins.

Please get in touch via the enquiry form on our Contact Us page, should you have any further questions or to speak directly to our Leaders of Early Professional Development, Miss Megan Maguire and Mr. Dominic Bould.