What is it like to teach Functional Skills in prison?

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“I began my teaching career in 2005 as a driving instructor and it didn’t take long to realise that I loved teaching and wanted to develop my skills and began training to become a teacher. During my training, I realised that my passion lay in supporting adults who found learning difficult and I studied to become a Special Educational Needs (SEN) teacher.

“I started work with my County Council teaching on the Personalised Learning Pathway (PLP) for young adults with learning difficulties and while in this role, I qualified as a functional maths teacher and secured the role as lead maths tutor with PLP.

“Friends I had met during training worked for Novus and told me of the opportunities available working in offender learning and I felt it would suit my skills. I applied for a position at HMP Onley and when the interview date came through I took a leap of faith and gave up my job to attend the interview.

“All I can say is wow! I’ve loved my job since the interview. The staff are like family. The learners are great, yes, they have issues but that is what I love – finding a way to help them to enjoy learning.

“I’ve been with Novus for eight months now and they have supported my personal development with additional training, in fact I’m starting the Med (Educational Studies) degree with a colleague later this year.

“If anyone is thinking of taking the step into a career in offender learning, I’d say don’t hesitate – look on the Novus web site and find a suitable position, send your CV in and come and enjoy the role. I did and I’ve never looked back.”