Producing quality teachers
Only teachers can provide quality education
EDUCATION BY ZAFFAR-ULLAH-MALIK
In 2012, discussions about what constitutes ‘quality teaching’ and the role of teacher professional standards in determining and monitoring quality will no doubt continue to be important in Jammu and Kashmir, as well as in many parts of the India. I had the pleasure of attending workshop, “How to Prepare Teachers in the 21st Century”. The focus was teacher professional standards and innovative teaching techniques. It was clear during this gathering of teacher educators and researchers from different parts of India and Australia that there are many understandings of ‘quality’ that are related to, and defined by, different local education contexts. However, it is generally accepted that ‘quality’ education is dependent on teachers. As Lingard said, ‘Of all school variables . . . it is teachers who have the greatest effect on student learning outcomes’ (Lingard, 2005, p. 174).
Teacher Professional Standards:
The need of the hour is to have “Professional Standards for Teachers”, which will have important implications for teacher accreditation and re-accreditation, and therefore for teacher education curriculum. A question in the minds of some of us involved in pre-service teacher education is, will standards that are prescriptive and closely linked to accreditation requirements give us the flexibility to design teacher education curriculum that will help us prepare the next generation of teachers for a future that we don’t yet understand? Will a standards driven teacher education curriculum enable us, in the words of Goodwin, to ‘conceptualize teaching knowledge in ways that transcend the practicalities (and limitations) of discrete teaching skills and tools. This question seems all the more urgent given the current environment where teaching is being seen more and more in technical terms.
Majority of researchers discuss and reflect on a new undergraduate unit of work that aim to extend students’ reflective and reflexive skills. ‘Reorienting Teaching Standards: Learning from Lesson Study’, addresses how lesson study can inform the use of teaching standards.
Understanding what knowledge school students bring with them to the classroom is fundamentally important for teachers. However, the same thinking has been slow to enter into the domain of teacher education practice, even though it is well established in other adult education sectors where Recognition of Prior Learning has been formalised for some time now. More focus should be put on theorising teaching practice, and push the boundaries of teacher education in an innovative, non-standard manner.
(Zaffar-Ullah-Malik is chairman, Little Angles Academy, Tral)
Lastupdate on : Mon, 9 Apr 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 9 Apr 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 10 Apr 2012 00:00:00 IST
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