This timely and relevant study coincides with the recent publication of the Teaching Council’s 2013 ‘Guidelines on School Placement’, which calls for “greater consistency in the school placement experience” and “enhanced collaboration” (Teaching Council 2013, p.3) between universities and schools. The placement tutor, positioned at the interface of both school and university, is tasked with balancing the “dual role of assisting and assessing” (Slick, 1997, p.713) while managing " to scaffold the learning of novice teachers toward more expert teaching” (Zeichner, 2005, p.118). The lack of training for placement tutors to enact this broad spectrum of functions appears to be a contentious issue in the research literature, with the supervision of student teachers occupying a peripheral role in universities. They are seen to “toil in the shadows” with little or no training or support (Kosnik & Beck, 2008, p.185).The researcher is currently in Phase 1 of a case study of investigating the recruitment and learning support provision for physical education school placement tutors on the 2015-2016 school placement programme of the BEd (Hons) Sports Studies and Physical Education programme in the School of Education, UCC, Cork. Data collection methods include questionnaires, focus groups and semi-structured interviews with schools principals/deputy principals, cooperating teachers and student teachers from the schools who are currently partners in the BEDSSPE School Placement programme. The research plan and initial findings will be presented at this conference for peer review and feedback.