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Political meddling in teacher education needs to stop

Diane Mayer writes in The Conversation (13.9.16) about the hotly debated issue of school teacher education, and how political ‘interference’ has led to distortions of evidence-based approaches to teacher training.

‘Teacher education is a highly scrutinised area. Australia, for example, has had a steady stream of reviews over the past 25 years.

‘These reviews usually examine the available research literature (mostly as it is filtered through reports by think-tanks and various multinationals and global organisations) and set up mechanisms for sampling professional, political and public opinions about teacher education. They aim to find out what is wrong with it and how to fix it.

‘For the most part, the recommendations from these reviews, for a range of reasons including resourcing, changes in government, lack of professional and political will, are not put into action.

‘… We cannot divorce teacher preparation from employment and induction. We need to re-conceptualise teacher education as a collective responsibility of universities, schools, systems and communities within a newly created real or imagined hybrid space. This has the potential to revolutionise learning teaching.’

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