Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

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JIM CURRAN
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Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by JIM CURRAN » Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:28 am

Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools
Fully qualified teachers are in the minority at a string of English schools, new figures suggest.

Fully qualified teachers are in the minority at a string of English schools, new figures suggest.

Five primary and five secondary schools, teaching a total of 5,500 children, are reportedly employing trainee teachers, classroom assistants and outside specialists in subjects like languages rather than staff with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/ed ... hools.html

elsiep
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by elsiep » Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:47 pm

...and that doesn't include the schools with large numbers of supply teachers

elsie

JIM CURRAN
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by JIM CURRAN » Sun Mar 10, 2013 10:44 am

Free school head without any teaching qualifications plans to ignore curriculum
Profession is being 'deskilled' say unions as figures show 10% of teachers in new sector are unqualified

One in ten teachers working in free schools are not formally qualified to do so, according to official figures, including a 27-year-old who has been appointed as headteacher of a primary due to open this year. There were 21 teachers with no teaching qualifications in the 17 free schools that responded to a government census. Almost half (47%) of the schools had at least one unqualified teacher.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/201 ... lification

kenm
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by kenm » Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:44 pm

Should we be worried by teachers' lack of teaching qualifications? I read on this forum many criticisms of the beliefs and methods that primary teachers have been taught during their time at university education departments. What would worry me more, especially at Levels 2 and above, is what the teachers know themselves about what they are supposed to teach.
"... the innovator has as enemies all those who have done well under the old regime, and only lukewarm allies among those who may do well under the new." Niccolo Macchiavelli, "The Prince", Chapter 6

JIM CURRAN
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by JIM CURRAN » Sun Mar 10, 2013 7:03 pm

While I would agree Kenm that there are lots of problems with teacher training I think that to fill our schools with untrained people is certainly not the solution. We would do well to follow the Finnish model where all teachers are trained to Masters level and Teaching as a profession is on a par with Medicine. Only the top ten per cent of university graduates are eligible to apply for teacher training.

“For the academic year 2011- 2012 , there were 2,400 new applicants to the 120 places available in the primary school teacher education program in the Department of Teacher Education at the University of Helsinki.” ( Finnish Lessons page 75 -Pasi Sahlberg )

We need to take a long hard look at how we train our teachers and who we train.

kenm
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by kenm » Sun Mar 10, 2013 8:03 pm

JIM CURRAN wrote:While I would agree Kenm that there are lots of problems with teacher training I think that to fill our schools with untrained people is certainly not the solution. We would do well to follow the Finnish model where all teachers are trained to Masters level and Teaching as a profession is on a par with Medicine.
If you introduced this in the UK, whether it would improve matters in the schools would still depend on who did the training, ....
Only the top ten per cent of university graduates are eligible to apply for teacher training.
... but that would go a considerable way towards alleviating the second problem.
"... the innovator has as enemies all those who have done well under the old regime, and only lukewarm allies among those who may do well under the new." Niccolo Macchiavelli, "The Prince", Chapter 6

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palisadesk
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by palisadesk » Sun Mar 10, 2013 9:21 pm

The teacher-training issue needs a rethink, in most situations. I used to feel (as many here perhaps do) that pre-service training should ground teachers in specific skills in teaching beginning reading, the alphabetic code, mathematics, behaviour management and many other specific skills that are needed for success in the classroom.

However, while I still think teachers need to learn these things, I no longer think that the pre-service training is the most effective place to do it. Now, teacher training and employment situations may be very different in the UK (I wouldn't know) but in both the U.S. and Canada, a teacher may aspire to be a primary-grade (Infant school in UK parlance) teacher, or an intermediate mathematics teacher, or some other particular field or level. However, when s/he is hired, all bets are off as to what s/he will be required to teach. Teachers themselves have very little say in what their assignments are; they may express preferences, but there is no guarantee their preferences will be honoured. Certain subjects, like French, require a specific qualification, but most do not.

A single year (or even two) of pre-service teacher training is not sufficient to prepare a teacher to teach every subject well at every level, and specializing in one level will quite likely prove useless when the teacher is assigned, upon hiring, to something quite different. What would make more sense is to have some of the strictures in place that Finland and many Canadian provinces already have: those applying for teacher training must have university degrees in a core discipline already, and have a good academic record. Their graduate teacher preparation program could consist of one year of course work, involving learning applicable to all levels: psychology, statistics, research design and interpretation, assessment, legislation, cognitive science and so on. The second would be more practical in nature, would involve apprentice situations and the training in methods and specific materials would be provided by the school district or educational ministry to co-ordinate with what the teacher might logically be expected to do when hired.

Further options for credit could be provided to instruct teacher candidates in specific disciplines, special needs areas (methods of teaching the deaf, for example), research-based interventions for "hard to serve" pupils, assistive technology for those with significant disabilities, and so on. These could be offered in conjunction with placements in work environments where this learning could be applied.

When we have no opportunity to apply what we learn in courses or workshops, research shows that we forget most of it, while if it is offered in conjunction with on-the-job experience and feedback, about 80% will be retained and applied. Even after teachers are graduated and employed, regular upgrading and additional learning in effective methods should be required and, again, taught in conjunction with on-the-job application so far as possible.

At one time Engelmann and Becker supervised a teacher preparation program that operated somewhat along these lines. Even with on-the-job training and mentoring, along with coursework and a degree program, Engelmann said it took about 5 years for a teacher to become proficient at teaching core reading, writing and math skills, and 10 years to become a "master" teacher - a goal perhaps not reasonable for every teacher, but proficiency should be the aim for all..

Susan S.

geraldinecarter
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by geraldinecarter » Sun Mar 10, 2013 11:05 pm

It's a hugely complex issue. But does NHS restructuring tell us anything? No matron, no overarching sister-in-charge ? (I could go on for ages about this - from personal long-time experience of GOS ,St. Thomas', Haywood Heath, Brrighton... so the list includes two v. distinguished hospitals ).

Post WW2 - we had PTS disorder: ex soldiers from war time/ quickly- itrained teachers, as well as un-trained assistants, hideous pre-penicillian diseases, rations that no-one would find acceptable now - yet we all learned to read,write and do mental arithmetic. It was kept simple- KISS- and easily replicable and inexpensive and library provision was great - we read and read and read (ok mostly enid blyton but compare the word count.....ie practice) and lots of handwriting amd corrected spellling . The practice for struggleg readers was by default impressive - now it's shrunk, shrunk, shrunk hugely so that we seem to be happy with phonicX for 7 year olds. Yes we have huge advances in phoneme-grapheme structutre, materials, advice, videos, photocopyi9ng, qwhite boards etc.etc.etc.

.I'm not starry eyed - there was a lot wrong = but are we that much further advanced in spite of the billions and billions invested?

And on a personal note - why sideline programmes and play dumb about programmes that reach the lowest 18%? We have a significant problem with 4-5 year olds who have missed out on all the subtleties of language, including language articulation, that cannot be 'caught ' solely by mechanical means. Mechanical - hugely important - but are we missing half the 'story'?

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elsiep
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by elsiep » Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:30 am

geraldinecarter wrote:It's a hugely complex issue.
There are complex situations in practice. But in principle training is a fairly straightforward issue. What knowledge and skills do trainees require and does it work?
But does NHS restructuring tell us anything? No matron, no overarching sister-in-charge ? (I could go on for ages about this - from personal long-time experience of GOS ,St. Thomas', Haywood Heath, Brrighton... so the list includes two v. distinguished hospitals ).
Yes, it tells us that managerial skills are not always directly transferable without domain knowledge. We knew that before Mrs T changed the system, but the people who said it weren't listened to. Government shouldn't design services - it doesn't have the expertise and has a political agenda.
Post WW2 - we had PTS disorder: ex soldiers from war time/ quickly- itrained teachers, as well as un-trained assistants, hideous pre-penicillian diseases, rations that no-one would find acceptable now - yet we all learned to read,write and do mental arithmetic.
Unfortunately we didn't. Adult literacy and numeracy has always been an issue. Many children acquired impairments as a result of pre-penicillin diseases and were shunted into institutions. Infant mortality rates were also higher.
and aIt was kept simple- KISS- and easily replicable and inexpensive and library provision was great - we read and read and read (ok mostly enid blyton but compare the word count.....ie practice) and lots of handwriting amd corrected spellling . The practice for struggleg readers was by default impressive - now it's shrunk, shrunk, shrunk hugely so that we seem to be happy with phonicX for 7 year olds. Yes we have huge advances in phoneme-grapheme structutre, materials, advice, videos, photocopyi9ng, qwhite boards etc.etc.etc.
It was also kept flexible.
.I'm not starry eyed - there was a lot wrong = but are we that much further advanced in spite of the billions and billions invested?
You're quite right, we're not. That's because the billions have been invested in the wrong things.
And on a personal note - why sideline programmes and play dumb about programmes that reach the lowest 18%? We have a significant problem with 4-5 year olds who have missed out on all the subtleties of language, including language articulation, that cannot be 'caught ' solely by mechanical means. Mechanical - hugely important - but are we missing half the 'story'?
Not sure what you mean about 'mechanical' Geraldine.

elsie

geraldinecarter
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by geraldinecarter » Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:40 pm

Foundational skills are absolutely vital but unless you quickly transfer these skills into wider reading, by way of essential decodable books and practice many children are left with poor sense of narrative and the awareness and depth of understanding that narrative provides. Paucity of vocabulary and over-all knowledge are also the losers. In other words, children can be left with the 'mechanics' but without the ability to use these 'mechanics' more broadly. It has always seemed to me that if you're teaching synthetic and/or linguistic phonics, spelling skills largely develop organically and this obviates the necessity to over-emphasise spelling. to the detriment of engaging with children's literature and non-fiction and developing a sustained reading habit. I particularly liked the title of Ruth Miskin's talk at the forthcoming Education Show, flagged up by Susan G.
Teach a child to read, and keep that child reading, and you will change everything.
A really good and knowledgeable teacher will do both, but either over-emphasis on phonics and the technicalities of language or over-emphasis on 'real reading' without firm alphabetic code roots is damaging and also serves to energise the very prominent anti-phonics lobby and give them plenty of fodder.

Elsie - You were probably right to pick me up on generalizations about the post- war generation being able to read - it's based on wide-spread observation and questioning rather than on firm statistical evidence (the part of the Midlands I grew up in had high employmnet -even our village was peppered with factories). I'd love to see a break-down of literacy figures, post war.

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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by Lesley Drake » Mon Mar 11, 2013 7:26 pm

Me too Geraldine, I'd love to see the breakdown of the post war literacy figures that show you were wrong in your generalised assertion.


Can we have them please, elsiep?

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Susan Godsland
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by Susan Godsland » Tue Mar 12, 2013 2:26 pm

Such an interesting paper on the history of teaching reading in the UK - doesn't answer your question though Lesley.

The End of Literacy:
The Growth and
Measurement of British
Public Education Since
the Early 19th Century

http://www.bwpi.manchester.ac.uk/resour ... p-6709.pdf

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Susan Godsland
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Re: Unqualified teachers are majority of staff in some schools

Post by Susan Godsland » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:31 pm

Reading in the Primary School (Research by Joyce Morris 1959)
http://www.historyliteracy.org/scripts/ ... cle_ID=230
children’s reading standards in Kent which confirmed that they were above the national average. Nevertheless, 19.2 percent of the 3,022 survey seven-year-olds could be classed as ‘non-readers,’ and a further 26.4 percent had some mastery of reading mechanics but not sufficient for them to be independent readers of simple information and story books.

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