Academic Mentors

Teach First Learning Mentor Programme

Schools need support, now more than ever. Become an academic mentor and help a generation of pupils bounce back from a national education crisis.

  • Part of the government's new National Tutoring Programme
  • Help the country bounce back from COVID-19
  • Salaried classroom experience, using your specialist subject
  • Be expedited for other Teach First programmes (subject to eligibility and availability)
  • Become a Teach First ambassador upon completion
2020/21 academic year (various start dates)
Salaried from £19,000 per annum (pro-rata)
Applications open

Help schools bounce back from COVID-19 and make a difference to children who need it most.


Our new Academic Mentoring Programme is part of the government-funded National Tutoring Programme: increasing access to high-quality tuition for disadvantaged and vulnerable children (in both primary and secondary).

Secure, fixed-term employment

You’ll earn from the moment you start your training, with a salary of £19,000 per year (pro-rata dependent on start date). Academic mentors will also be officially employed by their school, meaning you will receive all the staff benefits included.

Explore teaching as a career 

The Teach First Academic Mentoring programme is ideal for recent graduates or career changers. With us, you’ll be able to explore the world of teaching without committing to (or paying for) teacher training. It is an ideal opportunity to use your skills and experience to influence pupils positively. You may very well discover a newfound passion and wish to take your teaching aspirations further.

Join a community of people changing education for the better

Upon completion of the programme you will automatically become a Teach First ambassador. Our community consists of teachers, leaders, policymakers and beyond, bringing their expertise to help unlock the potential in all children. You'll also have access to our networks, where you can link up with other ambassadors, keep up to date with Teach First and look out for new opportunities.

Help our schools recover 

COVID-19 has shaken our country’s education system to its core. As an academic mentor, you will play a key role in helping children in the most disadvantaged areas access high-quality tuition - giving them the confidence to pursue success in academia and beyond.  

National Tutoring Programme Logo
Teach First trainee
Teach First trainee and pupils in class


Help our country recover from crisis 

While COVID-19 has affected all pupils, it’s had the biggest impact on those from disadvantaged backgrounds. As a result, the attainment gap between them and their peers has widened. Experts believe this crisis could undo ten years of progress in the education sector. We don’t want to let this happen. That’s why we’re seeking talented people to become academic mentors, helping pupils access vital tuition.

Why become a Teach First academic mentor? 

Our government-funded Academic Mentoring Programme aims to provide high-quality tuition to all pupils - especially those who need it most. There is extensive evidence showing the positive impact of tutoring on pupils. As an academic mentor you’ll be a vital part of our country's efforts to bounce back from COVID-19. Apply now and make a real difference from day one, helping children achieve a fair education.

student in STEM lesson
Teach First trainee and pupil


What does a Teach First academic mentor do? 

Academic mentors are hired to support very specific issues within schools. Exactly what your role entails depends on both the needs of your school and your individual skillset.  

However, most can expect to do the following type of work once in the classroom: 

  • Subject-specific work with small groups.
  • 1:1 subject-specific work.
  • Revision lessons. 
  • Additional support for those shielding or not in school.  

What subjects will you be supporting? 

Currently, we are recruiting academic mentors specialising in one of seven subject areas: 

  • English 
  • Humanities (geography, history, religious studies)
  • Maths 
  • Modern foreign languages (French, Spanish)
  • Science 
  • Primary literacy
  • Primary numeracy


To help get you the best possible start on the programme, we will provide intensive training for successful applicants. This is split into two camps: 

  • One week of initial training for academic mentors who are already qualified teachers. 
  • Two weeks for those who hold a degree, but are not qualified teachers. 
Teach First trainee
Teach First trainee


The Teach First Academic Mentoring Programme will run for the 2020/21 academic year.

Is the programme right for you? 

Whether you are a recent graduate or are considering a career change, this programme is ideal for those wanting to dip their toes into the teaching profession. 

To be eligible, you must at minimum have the following: 

  • Either a completed university degree (2.2 or above) or have Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). 
  • Grade C (Level 4) or above in GCSE maths and English.
  • Right to work in the UK for the duration of the programme.

Because the training period for this programme is shorter than it is for the Training Programme, we require mentors to have a higher level of pre-existing subject knowledge. This means that in some cases we’re only considering candidates based on their degree subject.

You will be eligible to mentor the following curriculum areas based on set criteria:

  • Secondary maths: a B or above in A-level maths OR a university degree in maths.
  • Secondary science: a B or above in two A-level science subjects OR a university degree in a science subject.
  • Secondary modern foreign languages: a B or above at A-level in both French and Spanish OR a B at A-level in either French or Spanish, with 50% of your university degree focusing on that language.
  • Secondary English: an English degree
  • Secondary humanities (geography, history, religious studies): a degree in either geography, history or religious studies
  • Primary: a university degree in any national curriculum subject, psychology, education studies or childhood studies.

Other relevant qualifications and experience will be considered on a case by case basis, and you will be assessed based on both academics and Teach First competencies.

How to apply 

Applications are now open. Sign up using the link below:

Apply now

Successful applicants will be invited to an online assessment.

Your school and start date 

After receiving an offer, successful applicants will be matched with a school and receive a start date.

Note that start dates are conditional on the needs of our partner schools – depending on your subject speciality and when you apply. We appreciate your flexibility during this time.

Teach First trainee and pupil reading a book
Teach First trainee at whiteboard

Our country needs teachers, now more than ever. Join our most important cohort for a generation. Places for our 2021 Training Programme now open.

Training Programme

Image of teacher standing with hand on chin

Help us ensure the poorest children aren’t shut out of a fair education.

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