Volunteering - frequently asked questions

General

How do I become a volunteer?


We recruit for teaching, teaching assistant and non-classroom volunteers throughout the school year (September-June). If you are interested in finding out more or becoming a volunteer, please email us with your contact details, your availability on Monday and Wednesday evenings and what role(s) you're interested in. Find out more about our volunteer roles and our teacher training programme for new volunteers.




How long do I have to volunteer for?


Our minimum commitment is two school terms - meaning, for example, if you start with us in September, you'd be expected to volunteer with us until at least the Easter holidays. Many of our volunteers, however, have been with us for over five years and we hope you find it somewhere where you'd want to continue long term.




What times do you need volunteers for?


We run classes on Monday and Wednesday evenings (18:45-21:00) during the school terms, with a slightly longer summer holiday (we finish at the end of June). Occasionally, there are some evenings (enrolment, exam evenings) where we ask if volunteers can arrive slightly earlier - by 18:30 - to support us to make this evenings run as smoothly as possible. Volunteers are only expected to commit to one evening a week, however some of our volunteers come on both evenings.




Do you need any non-teaching volunteers?


Yes! We might not always have something immediately available, but we are always looking for teaching assistants to support our teachers in the classroom. We occasionally have a handful of roles outside of the classroom. Please email us if you are interested in supporting the school, but not in a teaching capacity.




What are the benefits of volunteering?


You'll receive: - Full training and support - A suite of print and digital classroom resources to support your lessons - Access to workshops to develop your teaching style* - At least three volunteer socials during the year You'll also get to meet with and support individuals from over 50 nationalities across the west London and wider area to integrate into their local communities and achieve their personal and career aspirations.




Where are you based?


We run the classes out of Elthorne Park High School in Hanwell. You can easily get to the school from Boston Manor tube station on the Piccadilly Line or use the E8 or 195 buses, which stop a two minute wallk away. There is a car park available, however it is occasionally closed when the school has large events.





Teaching

Can I volunteer without teaching experience?


Yes! Many of our volunteer teachers have no prior teaching experience before joining the school. All you need is a willingness to get involved and help others. Twice a year, we run a bespoke eleven-week teacher training programme for our new teaching volunteers to ensure they are supported and feel confident in the classroom. If we can't put you onto one of the programmes, you'll support our teachers and Head of School until the next training programme starts. Get in touch if you're interested in joining our teacher training programme.




I am a qualified teacher/teacher in training/I have a CELTA/DELTA. How can I support the school?


That's fantastic - your experience will be invaluable to us. Depending on your qualifications and experience, we may put you in a class straight away (subject to availability). We'll observe and check in with you regularly to make sure you settle in. If it's been a while since you've taught or you feel you need a refresher, you're welcome to join our bespoke teacher training programme. The programme is flexible to accommodate experienced teachers with more challenging activities and there are additional opportunities to support the school within the teaching, learning and development space. Please get in touch with us and we'll arrange for you to visit the school, or have a chat to us if it's during the holidays.




I'm looking for a teaching job, can you help me?


We have no paid positions at the school - we are entirely run by volunteers. We are more than happy to provide you with a reference after you have volunteered with us for at least two school terms. We'll also ensure you get as much experience as possible when you volunteer with us and we'll try and support you however else we can.





Do you still have a question?

Get in touch with us and we'll respond as soon as we can.