Being a part of Turn To Teaching

Written By: Megan Shannon

Turn to Teaching runs the Think About Teaching course which is a year-long Foundation Course for Initial Teacher Education. The course aims to diversify the Irish classroom by fostering a culture among students from groups currently under-represented in teaching to consider the teaching profession as a desirable and achievable career option. The year-long course will support students academically, personally and socially; providing a pathway to the Bachelor of Education in Primary Education and the Professional Master of Education (Primary) in the Froebel department.

The TTT Team.

I was a part of the very first year of Turn to Teaching (TTT), looking back to that time, I was in a job I hated and dreading going to everyday and just really feeling low! I was at a time in my life that I felt like if I don’t try get back into college now, then it’ll never happen for me. 

I had always wanted to be a primary school teacher but for many reasons it was not the path I chose straight out of leaving school, however it was always in the back of my mind that being a primary school teacher was my dream job. Hearing about the TTT program was amazing! I firmly believe in the saying ‘everything happens for a reason’ because just as I was about to begin my search on how I could go about starting my teaching journey, this course opened up. Getting onto the course has been one of my best achievements to date!

The course itself was a great experience and I got to meet so many amazing people and friends. I learned a lot about myself in my year in TTT and the type of learner I am but also the type of teacher I want to be and the influence I would like to have on children and people around me. The course is so diverse and you meet so many people from all walks of life that you learn from. You hear of experiences that people have had in our education system, some positive, some negative but it all pushes you broader and makes you want to do better for those who have had bad experiences. 

Through reflecting while participating on the TTT program, I became and continue to be an advocate for Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools (DEIS) and am so passionate about getting people from DEIS backgrounds to realise their potential and that barriers can be broken! This course allows people like myself, (someone from a DEIS background) or people who are not the ‘typical teacher’ to enter the workforce, which benefits our education system greatly. My cohort of peers on the course are, or are in the process of becoming some of the best primary school teachers in the teaching profession! To think that without this course it may not have been possible (for myself included) is shocking as we bring so much creativity, diversity and enthusiasm to the profession. The children of our future would be missing out on unbelievable teachers if this course was not created, as we would be slipping through the cracks of our education system and our potential would never be highlighted. 

This course has changed my life for the better and I owe so much of my successes to it. I would not be a fully qualified primary school teacher , living out my dream job in my dream school without this course and I will be forever grateful for the opportunities it has given me – Meghan Shannon.

By DACE Maynooth

This is the new blog for students, colleagues and friends of the Department of Adult and Community Education, Maynooth University. We aim to promote diversity and inclusion in education using our online platform. Guest bloggers and friends of the Department will post about their research and experiences in Education. The views expressed by the authors of individual posts do not reflect the views of the Department of Adult and Community Education Maynooth University.

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