Teacher Education Policy: Some Issues Arising from Research and Practice

Teacher Education Policy: Some Issues Arising from Research and Practice

Teacher Education Policy: Some Issues Arising from Research and Practice

Teacher Education Policy: Some Issues Arising from Research and Practice

Synopsis

To improve schools we need to improve teachers. This volume provides recent research evidence that suggests that current education policy is not Promoting Effective Teacher Education And That Teacher Education Policy has: failed to support the formation of professional partnerships in initial teacher education; has almost ignored the induction of newly qualified teachers; and has narrowed in-service education into support for the implementation of central policy.; The evidence gathered in this book is used to argue for new forms of teacher education in every phase, built upon the foundation of professional partnership between schools and institutions of higher education. It is suggested that the funding for such changes could be drawn from less effective forms of school improvement, such as National Curriculum development and school inspection. With the implementation of such changes, it is argued, good quality teacher education programmes would prosper and foster a broad concensus about educational development that is often absent.

Excerpt

Solutions must come through the development of shared meaning. the interface between individual and collective meaning and action in everyday life is where change stands or falls. (Fullan, 1991, p. 5)

Whereas we have a vast literature on the philosophical and pedagogical underpinning of initial teacher education, and on the respective contributions of schools and higher education to the professional learning of new teachers (e.g., Furlong et al., 1988, Booth, Furlong and Wilkin, 1990), we have relatively few accounts of the management of change in initial teacher education. This is a curious lacuna, not least since the last decade has engendered a considerable literature on the management of change and the process of change in the schools to which the 'products' of teacher education proceed. Wilkin observes that 'it is a relatively simple matter to devise and justify theoretical schemes. Putting them into operation is altogether different' (Wilkin, 1991, p. 8); similarly, Fullan argues that 'educational change is technically simple and socially complex' (1991, p. 47). This paper is a contribution to understanding the nature and process of change in teacher education. Its central theme is the development of a school-based model of teacher education in the context of the one-year Secondary Post Graduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) at the University of East Anglia between 1991 and 1994. in describing the background to, assumptions of, and development of, the change process, I draw upon themes relating to the theory of change, notably meanings of change and the attitudes of participants to the nature of change as well as on historical and contextual factors related to the School of Education at uea and its relationships with East Anglian schools. It is based largely on an analysis of the change process in a single institution, set in and then related to wider policy and theoretical concerns in teacher education. the change process at the centre of the paper was, and remains, complex for a number of interrelated reasons. the first is the location of change at the intersection of political initiatives, educational research perspectives and a period of multiple,

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