Explore: Education

PE Teacher
The Gateway Academy

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Matt Clark – PE Teacher Gateway Academy


OK my name’s Matt Clark, I work for the Gateway Academy and I’m a PE Teacher.


So a PE teacher, what do we do? We get up at the crack of dawn in our shorts no matter what the weather, rain, snow, sunshine it’s nice in the summer but it’s brutal in the winter and we basically teach a range, a variety of sports to all of our students from year 7 through to year 11.


And we go from football to hockey to rugby to netball, cricket in the summer, athletics in the summer. Best bits is seeing that student who hasn’t been able to do that skill that you’re teaching them, they can’t do it, they can’t do it, they can’t do it and the look on their face when they finally realise they’ve done it, is awesome. Or that question that you ask them, and they go, I don’t know, and they go, and you ask them another question that’s worded slightly differently and they answer it and you say, well you do know. And it’s that realisation for kids when it settles in, they actually do know how to do something or they can do that lay up in basketball or, they score that goal in football that they’ve been dying to do, or it’s the reaction that other kids give to them.


The kids are awesome, they get you through the day, if you didn’t like the kids you wouldn’t be a teacher. The kids are awesome, they crack you up.


I’ve always been obsessed with sport, it’s not even a healthy habit really it’s a bit of an obsession. Since I was 8, 9 I’ve been playing for clubs outside of school. My couple of years at college has got to be a bit of a barrier to having to go on to do a foundation degree, it wasn’t the most ideal way now don’t get me wrong I’m lucky to have got any degree with, I did come away with Es for A level, now, I passed I got A levels which is something but, I didn’t work as hard as I could have done. Results day for my A levels absolutely devastated, opening the envelope and I wasn’t going to go to university straight away, I didn’t know what I wanted to do, for some reason that second year had taken me away from wanting to get involved with sport and I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I had my job at the pub, and I had something where I was earning half decent money I was pretty much full time there now, didn’t’ really know what to do.


So I was umming and ahhing looking around at sort of jobs up in London, up in the city getting an apprenticeship, something like that and then got to November, middle of November and I went, don’t know what I’m doing, why am I looking for these jobs in the city, I’m obsessed with sport, I always have been, it’s a six month blip I haven’t wanted to be a PE Teacher I’ve got to go to Uni. And luckily Lincoln offered a foundation degree it was a two year course based at a college but it was run by the university and then after that I had to do a week’s study in my summer holidays to get onto the full Bachelor of Science degree which I managed to do again at Lincoln just in the third year. So it was still three years I’ve come out with a Bachelor of Science honours degree, but yeah I got there in the end it was the best three years of my life, still close friends with everyone from up there really.


There were no PE teaching jobs there were no jobs in schools really that I could find anywhere, so, I applied for a job with the NHS I was working as a health improvement practitioner and it was working, based in a school and I was here for two years doing that. Within those two years I got to know staff that were teachers, I got in with the PE department and then I’ve wanted to get in teaching my whole time I was just a stop gap until I got into teaching.


Yeah in the end I started chatting to the right people and there was one member of staff who gave me a shot at getting through my graduate teacher programme based here.


I love my job I do, I’ve wanted to be a teacher since I was 13, 14, 15, like I said I had that blip where I didn’t know what I wanted to do but I have wanted to be a teacher since I was that old.


It’s not handed to you on a plate, you’ve got to work to get to where you want to be, if you know where that is when you’re 13, 14, like I did, then you’ve got to work to get there, if you don’t know, then you’ve got to work to find out.



“The kids are awesome – they get you through the day.” After disappointing A-level results Matt considered other career options but his love of sport brought him back to the idea of becoming a PE Teacher. Following university he worked as a NHS heath practitioner and from there managed to secure a place on the Graduate Teacher Programme.

More information about Secondary education teaching professionals

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

40%  male 
60%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Secondary (and middle school deemed secondary) education teaching professionals plan, organise and provide instruction in one or more subjects, including physical education and diversionary activities, within a prescribed curriculum in a secondary or secondary/ middle school.
Entry is with a first degree that provides QTS (qualified teacher status) or, in Scotland, TQ (teaching qualification); or other relevant degree followed by further postgraduate training (most commonly PGCE – Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary Education, or, in Scotland, PGDE – Professional Graduate Diploma in Education). Further and higher professional qualifications are required for some teaching posts.
  • Prepares and delivers courses and lessons in accordance with curriculum requirements and teaches one or more subjects;
  • Prepares, assigns and corrects exercises and examinations to record and evaluate students’ progress;
  • Prepares students for external examinations and administers and invigilates these examinations;
  • Maintains records of students’ progress and development;
  • Supervises any practical work and maintains classroom discipline;
  • Undertakes pastoral duties;
  • Supervises teaching assistants and trainees;
  • Discusses progress with student, parents and/or other education professionals;
  • Assists with or plans and develops curriculum and rota of teaching duties.
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