This UK report looks at the true cost of teacher training, taking into account the costs to government and the retention rate of the teacher trainees to work out the true cost per teacher who is still teaching after 5 years.
Since New Zealand also has issues with teacher recruitment and retention, with shortages on some areas and a glut of teachers in others, and since we too have Teach First as a route into teaching, it would be interesting to know how this compares to New Zealand.
Image courtesy of sattva at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
For those of you that think how New Zealand structures teacher training in future isn’t an issue to be concerned about, take time to read this and see how, in the UK, outstanding university courses in Teacher training have been shut down since their equivalent scheme, School Direct, started.
The Department for Education boasts that take up for the scheme is great:
…there will be 17,609 places for School Direct trainees in 2015 and 15,490 higher education postgraduate places
Proponents cite the increasing numbers of applications year on year as evidence that School Direct works. I would posit that it is evidence that would-be teachers can no longer afford to go to university and prefer to earn money while training. Who wouldn’t? But that in no way means the scheme is superior in terms of training.
There are another concern, too.
As universities shut down their teacher training programmes, there will eventually be a lack of places even for School Direct trainees to get their uni-based components:
Under School Direct, schools recruit trainees directly and link up with universities to provide out-of-classroom training. Trainees have an “expectation of employment” at their school at the end of their training.
But critics are concerned that the shift to School Direct may destabilise the teacher training system because universities cannot guarantee student numbers – and so funding – year on year.
And there’s a teacher shortage looming in the UK…
Hey, but who cares, because when push comes to shove the government will scream !!!TEACHER SHORTAGE!!! and decree that teachers don’t have to be trained at all.
You know, like they don’t in charter schools already….
See the link?
Cheap, disposable labour – seemingly the government’s goal for all employees these days.
I think the most telling part of the article is when the Department for Education spokesperson said:
“The School Direct programme is a key part of our plan for education.”
Yes. I bet it is.
Alllllll part of the bigger plan.
I’m telling you, people, we are on one hell of a slippery slope.
Sources and further reading: