Education

PE teacher

Physical education (PE) teachers work in schools and colleges, teaching sport and fitness to young people.

Annual Salary

£17,682 to £40,490

Average UK salary in 2018 was £29,588
(source Office for National Statistics)

Working hours

33 to 35 term time

You could work: evenings / weekends; attending events or appointments

What's it all about?

Day to day tasks

You will:

  • prepare lessons and teaching materials
  • teach and coach a range of sports and physical activities to pupils of different ages and abilities
  • manage class behaviour, motivate and encourage all pupils to take part
  • work with learning support assistants to help pupils with special educational needs and disabilities
  • set and mark assignments and prepare pupils for exams
  • attend meetings and training
  • talk to parents and carers about their children's progress
  • work with other professionals such as educational psychologists, counsellors, social workers and mentors
  • organise events like sports days, field trips and matches with other schools and colleges
  • take registers, update records and write reports

Working environment

You could work at a school or at a college.

Your working environment may be outdoors in all weathers.

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
University

You can do a sport or physical education degree with qualified teacher status (QTS).

You can also complete a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE), if you have a first degree without QTS. This can be done at university or on a school-based training programme.

There are more training options if you want to change career or specialise in teaching certain subjects.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths
  • GCSE science at grade 9 to 4 (A* to C) for primary school teaching
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study
For more information
Apprenticeship

You can get into this career through one of a small number of postgraduate teaching apprenticeships, if you have a degree.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths
  • GCSE science at grade 9 to 4 (A* to C) for primary school teaching
  • a degree for a teaching apprenticeship
For more information
Work

You may be able to get into teaching, if you're a PE or sports graduate, by working as a sports coach in a school, then moving onto a teacher training programme.

You'll need coaching qualifications in your specialist sport to do this.

Volunteering and work experience

You'll find it helpful to get some experience of working with young people though this is not essential. You can do this through paid work or by volunteering at a school, doing youth work or coaching at a sports club.

Requirements and restrictions

You'll need to:

More information

Career tips

You can attend teacher training events before you apply to get advice about the profession, the different training routes and funding. You can attend events in person and online.

Learning to drive is useful, as you may be expected to drive a minibus to take teams of pupils to sports events.

Further information

You can find out more about how to become a teacher from Get Into Teaching.

You can also search for jobs through the Teaching Vacancies service.

You could become a specialist leader of education, supporting teachers in other schools. You could also become a curriculum leader, head of department, deputy head or headteacher.

You could use your experience to work in coaching or sports development.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
  • be able to motivate and inspire pupils of all abilities to take part and learn new skills
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • knowledge of English language
  • the ability to work well with others
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • leadership skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • active listening skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
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