The TES is reporting suggestions that two-year “higher-level apprenticeships” should be introduced for teachers to counter “anti-intellectualism” and stop new staff from dropping out.
…Most new entrants to the profession should spend two years as apprentice teachers after completing initial education degrees or postgraduate certification in education courses, according to Dr Janet Orchard, of the University of Bristol, and Professor Christopher Winch, of King’s College London.
They argue the change would tackle what they describe as “anti-intellectualism” behind the government’s push to shift teacher training out of universities and into schools. The academics also believe the apprenticeships would cut the numbers leaving teaching early.
“If new teachers do not feel adequately supported in their first teaching posts they are likely to become disillusioned very quickly,” they write in their report “What training do teachers need?”.
“Our proposal for a higher grade apprenticeship following the award of QTS provides a realistic and appropriate framework for supporting new teachers at the start of their careers and staunching the flow of talented young people from the profession.”
Around a quarter of teachers have left the profession four years after qualifying, according to government figures. The reseachers say part of the problem is the current 36-week PGCE course – which is not enough on its own to prepare candidates for the “difficult, demanding but ultimately rewarding” work of teaching.
The apprenticeships they suggest would see teachers work in the classroom with colleagues but also have one day a week for academic study at their university. Completing this apprenticeship would result in trainees gaining a Masters level qualification…
The proposals are made in a pamphlet called “What training do teachers need” which is part of the Impact series, published by the Philosophy of Education Society on the Wiley Online Library. Read it in full:Orchard_et_al-2015-Impact
What do you think of the idea of newly qualified teachers participating in a two year apprenticeship that combines classroom work with one day a week of academic study at university?
It’s not clear what impact it would have of pay or funding, but as a principle does it have legs?
Please give us your reactions in the comments or via Twitter…
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