Should I renew my membership of the Chartered College of Teaching?

Coin Toss
Like many others that I mix with online and offline,  I am already an active member of a subject association and a member of many other education networks. I like to think that I’m fairly well informed about key issues in education.

Through the Association of Science Education I get subject-specific advice, access to regional and national CPD conferences at reduced rates, I get access to a network of science teachers, I get my Chartered Science Teacher status, I get two science-related magazines and I even get my professional insurance.  This is my benchmark of a professional organisation.

When I joined the Chartered College last year I saw it as taking a punt. I didn’t know what I was going to get but it was only £29 for me to join, so I signed up and became a founding member.

Time flies and a year later I find myself being asked to renew (although the price has crept up to £45, 65% more than I paid last time). I reflected on how much I’ve used my membership (it’s why I’m still a member of the National Trust, I visit their properties and car parks enough to justify the membership fee).

So how have I gained (or not) personally by being a member of the Chartered College?

  • I have received two (?) journals over the last twelve months
  • I’ve received a lapel badge and a notepad with the Chartered College logo on.
  • I once downloaded some of the summary materials from the University of Bristol (although this isn’t listed as a membership benefit any longer)
  • I’ve twice accessed the research database, once to write a blog post and once to research a presentation proposal.
  • I didn’t go to the annual conference – I couldn’t justify the cost plus the train ticket (more than the conference fee) to attend
  • I am already a Chartered Teacher at a fraction of the cost – I don’t see the recognition through the Science Council as being any less meaningful
  • I have only just discovered my ex-MAT is on the list of CCT founding networks…

Since I joined last time, my career path has taken a sudden and unexpected detour from the chalk face and although I’ve got more time to make use of the benefits they still haven’t been that useful. I love the Chartered College and all it stands for but in times when money is getting increasingly tighter for all in the profession, I join others in having to consider this purchase carefully before I make it.

Is your membership up for renewal? What decision have you made? How did you make your decision? Should I stay or should I go?

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2 replies on “Should I renew my membership of the Chartered College of Teaching?”

  1. Short answer…No.

    I only became a teacher 8 years ago having come from industry. I was startled by the sheer plethera of associations, networks and groups that I could have and, indeed, was expected to join compared to industry – and I was dismayed by the lack of justification for my money.

    I belong to a trade union as I was justifiably advised to join by my head, by my wife and by my wife’s head. I dont belong to any other subscription based educational organisation (even the ASE) as I cant see the point. For instance, even Chartered Science Teacher status – apart from the warm feeling, why bother? Does it come with a pay rise? Does one really get greater recognition?

    1. I think there is value in Chartered Status for me as it says something about my commitment to science education and my CPD. Ofsted mentioned it when I led our school through inspection and it was part of the picture they quickly put together of all the subject areas.

      The ASE annual conference is worth the membership price alone as you save the cost back straight away, and is amazing CPD – Birmingham next year! 😀

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