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General Chat Thread, Petition to remove Michael Gove in General; Originally Posted by PiqueABoo Which is the balance I gave it - PISA is the OECD study you're looking at. ...
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    Quote Originally Posted by PiqueABoo View Post
    Which is the balance I gave it - PISA is the OECD study you're looking at. Finn-style can't happen, but Canada + New Zealand + Australia look pretty good - what do they do? Do all our good educators get sick of it and emigrate?
    I don't understand your argument. You're arguing that Scandinavian countries don't have better education systems than ours, yet OECD numbers which you have used yourself show that they are? You want evidence, you used the evidence already! Stop ignoring it and trying to twist it.

    You're being very selective with your use of stats. You highlight those three countries but miss the USA bit, where private input into education is significantly higher than in the UK, and the USA is above us in the rankings too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    I don't understand your argument. You're arguing that Scandinavian countries don't have better education systems than ours, yet OECD numbers which you have used yourself show that they are? You want evidence, you used the evidence already! Stop ignoring it and trying to twist it.
    Not being understood appears to be my lot in life, but I'm not going to beat myself up over that. You explicitly said Scandanavian countries are "amongst the best in the world" but I don't think their PISA rankings supports that claim for that set of countries. Sure they're better than us but not the best unless you've got some sloppy Govian, or in fact long-standing UK education system definitions of 'amongst the best' where everyone a titchy bit above average qualifies (Sweden land of must-have free schools don't even manage average). I didn't mention US or Singapore, because it started with one set called Scandanavia and those three Commonwealth countries look like a vague set to me and collectively much better.

    Whether PISA reliably demonstrates anything is another matter, but it's better than assertions.

    Edit: PISA spreadsheet (can be downloaded in various formats) performed in 2009, published late 2010, the tests are 3-yearly so we'll likely won't get 2012 results for quite a while.
    Last edited by PiqueABoo; 4th August 2012 at 05:03 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bossman View Post
    Why should a professional engineer not teach students up to date technology or a chef teach food technology to give but 2 examples,
    Because those engineers and chefs aren't teachers! Being able to cook a souflee, or design a bridge are very different skills to being able to teach someone how to do it. Some interaction with "the real world" probably would help in the classroom, but there is no substitute for a good teacher.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew_C View Post
    Because those engineers and chefs aren't teachers! Being able to cook a souflee, or design a bridge are very different skills to being able to teach someone how to do it. Some interaction with "the real world" probably would help in the classroom, but there is no substitute for a good teacher.
    Your argument seems to indicate that those people can't be good teachers without a teaching qualification. That's like saying I can't be a good Network Manager because I don't have any IT qualifications...

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    Quote Originally Posted by PiqueABoo View Post
    Not being understood appears to be my lot in life, but I'm not going to beat myself up over that. You explicitly said Scandanavian countries are "amongst the best in the world" but I don't think their PISA rankings supports that claim for that set of countries. Sure they're better than us but not the best unless you've got some sloppy Govian, or in fact long-standing UK education system definitions of 'amongst the best' where everyone a titchy bit above average qualifies (Sweden land of must-have free schools don't even manage average). I didn't mention US or Singapore, because it started with one set called Scandanavia and those three Commonwealth countries look like a vague set to me and collectively much better.

    Whether PISA reliably demonstrates anything is another matter, but it's better than assertions.

    Edit: PISA spreadsheet (can be downloaded in various formats) performed in 2009, published late 2010, the tests are 3-yearly so we'll likely won't get 2012 results for quite a while.
    Must be different way of thinking about it then. 2nd, 9th and 15th all seem to be amongst the best to me...

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Your argument seems to indicate that those people can't be good teachers without a teaching qualification. That's like saying I can't be a good Network Manager because I don't have any IT qualifications...
    No but, you might be a better network manager with the qualifications. On the other hand everyone knows the worst network managers have a load of paper qualifications (MCSE) and no practical experience.

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    Must be different way of thinking about it then.
    Apparently. I haven't been infected by over a decade of educational romanticism so I'm only prepared to call the top 10 the best rather than giving them all pretty stickers for being a country or something. Take that PISA spreadsheet which lists 65 countries, total up the individual subject scores (reading+maths+science) for each country so you get "medly" rankings, and I believe we have the list below. I've highlighted the UK and the actual Scandanavian countries, (strictly speaking Finland is not Scandanavian, but if it were you still have to factor in their politics as a bit of an obstacle to replication here). Now ignore what folk with agendas have claimed and repeated until it's become yet more received "wisdom", can you honestly tell me people in this country should be uncritically thrilled about emulating Scandanavian education systems?

    I don't trust it that much though so a decent counter-argument will tell me why PISA, this list, is deceptive in part or whole...

    01 Shanghai-China
    02 Hong Kong-China
    03 Finland
    04 Singapore
    05 Korea-South
    06 Japan
    07 Canada
    08 New Zealand
    09 Chinese Taipei
    10 Australia
    11 Netherlands
    12 Liechtenstein
    13 Switzerland
    14 Estonia
    15 Germany
    16 Belgium
    17 Macao-China
    18 Poland
    19 Iceland
    20 Norway
    21 United Kingdom
    21 Denmark

    22 Slovenia
    23 Ireland
    24 France
    25 United States
    26 Hungary
    27 Sweden
    Last edited by PiqueABoo; 4th August 2012 at 11:52 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew_C View Post
    Because those engineers and chefs aren't teachers! Being able to cook a souflee, or design a bridge are very different skills to being able to teach someone how to do it.
    So just because you have a teaching degree that makes you better at teaching someone how to build a bridge or cook a soufle better than a fully qualified professional who actually does it for a living day in day out? What a pile of CARP!!!

    Some interaction with "the real world" probably would help in the classroom, but there is no substitute for a good teacher.
    So now you are actually agreeing with me!!! make your mind up!!! first you say fully qualified professionals are not teachers! then you make the statement above.

    The problem with a good majority of teachers today is that they have not had as you have stated Some interaction with the real world but they have gone straight from school to college to university and all have the same attitude and air of superiority over anyone else in the schools they work in, some really have a problem engaging with other professionals who are "Not teachers" but who in real terms do things which are far more complex and stressful for far less rewards than what the teaching professionals get.

    Does anyone on here ever have that feeling when the HT constantly waffles on in briefings about teachers and how they go the extra mile for the students.............never mentioning the support staff, when a teaching member of staff gains some form of extra qualification it is sung from the highest rafters of the school but if any other person in the school other than a teacher or HLTA gains other qualifications or does something good..............it never gets mentioned or rewarded.

    Schools are about educating the students but all I seem to hear from a good majority of these so called teaching professionals with their teaching degrees is the constant slagging off of the very students they are supposed to be looking after and caring for, the only thing they care about is themselves and any other teacher who does go the extra mile and raise the standards are suddenly pounced on by the other mediocre staff and brought to heel as it is not the done thing, it makes some of the others look rather ordinary.

    I have seen very good teachers and have been taught by very good teachers but there are not a lot of these about and of those that are good I would state my reputation on them having an industrial background and not an academic one, they will have experienced the real world for a few years and learnt what it takes from good experienced non qualified teachers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bossman View Post
    @all:

    The whole idea is to drive all state schools to become academies so the private market can become involved and quite frankly the only people who will suffer most is teachers as they lose all benefits attached to the job.

    You will of course get those schools who try to keep going as a state funded school but will have to fight very hard to maintain that status.
    coalition academies are still state funded. I don't think the problem per se is existing 'state' schools converting to 'state' academies, it's more so the fragmentation that can occur with different types of new school being created, parents have a lot to think about whether to sign their children up to some of these new experiments.

    In the long run none of us as employees in whatever organisation can expect to keep every aspect of the jobs we've signed up to do.... you have to expect over time changes in how, when and where you do your job - changes can happen quickly other times they happen more slowly and come in stages.... i think it unlikely that overnight in the majority of these academy conversions teachers 'lose their benefits' whatever that means. i'm sure teachers have had to deal with all sorts in the past when it comes to changes emanating centrally from the department that whole school they have to get their heads around for the start of a new school year. From what i've seen of senior leadership in education, good leaders keep the staff they value on side, if your a leader or manager you want to work with your staff to implement change rather than take a combative approach toward implementing change even if you have the remit to implement.

    it'll be the case that more schools than not will be academies, i don't think that schools will fight to retain a status that eventually puts them in the minority. Especially if there's a financial disincentive.

    where privatisation is really happening is in the introduction of these new schools competing in the market to attract pupils and in traditional local education authority services opened up to the private market where the LEA now has to compete more with other providers to provide services to schools. Schools have always had a choice in where to procure elements of their ICT from for instance, now they have a whole lot more choice from where they buy in other goods and services...that were in the past provided de factor by their local LEA. If nothing else it should keep the traditional LEA providers (now doubtless part-privatised or reorganised) on their toes. Many schools which have converted to academies with the same senior leadership in place may continue to use what's been provided to them where it's still available for the sake of familiarity.

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    Been a bit bit busy to read EG but was pointed to this thread. A very interesting one that throws up that Stats from *any* report will be used selectively and spun to bolster the ideas of people who are pro / anti particular ideas / projects. A fact of life.

    As for QTS ... It does not guarantee a good teacher nor does it guarantee the required specialist knowledge ... But it is a tried and tested way of getting people into the profession. In the same way that different universities are better for some areas (marine biology, sport science, etc) there are some places best at teacher training. It is then down to the schools to weed out the dross who get through ... and we all know some are better than others at this.
    As for passing on rubbish teachers vi good references ... it happens in lots of places. Football clubs, design agencies ... basically anywhere there is a contract which makes it hard for an employer to get rid of people. We do have to remember that there are many places where it is easy for employers to get rid of people and this is abused! This is why unions / agents / lawyers make it hard to get rid of people ... But that then leaves it open to abuse by the employee. By having non-QTS teachers employed in a school they are less likely to be in a union and could even be on shorter and less favourable contracts ... and so the Govt is happy by getting super-specialists in to schools, schools have more flexibility and the pupils / students get a richer experience!

    But knowledge does not make you a good teacher ... but the lack of QTS does not mean you are a rubbish teacher. It means that schools will have to work harder to select the right people and make sure they have checks in place to deal with it when it doesn't work. Although this is an OFSTED role to check I'm sure most fouls can see it falling down.

    The best suggestions I have seen so far are around team teaching. You have 2 classes together and one QTS teacher and one specialist. I've seen it done well with HLTAs, SEN specialists, ICT / CS specialists already and this is a good way of improving the knowledge / experience of the non-specialist as well as ensuring the specialist is kept an eye on until everyone is sure they are up to scratch and have shown they have the ability to teach / coach / instruct / mentor / facilitate learning. (Specialist and non-specialist are simply terms to separate the non-QTS specialist and the subject teacher who might not have the level of experience of the application of the subject in the outside world).

    I am sure that it *could* work, but only in a school where they are switched on.

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    The best suggestions I have seen so far are around team teaching. You have 2 classes together and one QTS teacher and one specialist. I've seen it done well with HLTAs, SEN specialists, ICT / CS specialists already and this is a good way of improving the knowledge / experience of the non-specialist as well as ensuring the specialist is kept an eye on until everyone is sure they are up to scratch and have shown they have the ability to teach / coach / instruct / mentor / facilitate learning.
    I HATE it when he gets it right

    Si

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    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook View Post
    Been a bit bit busy to read EG but was pointed to this thread. A very interesting one that throws up that Stats from *any* report will be used selectively and spun to bolster the ideas of people who are pro / anti particular ideas / projects. A fact of life.

    As for QTS ... It does not guarantee a good teacher nor does it guarantee the required specialist knowledge ... But it is a tried and tested way of getting people into the profession. In the same way that different universities are better for some areas (marine biology, sport science, etc) there are some places best at teacher training. It is then down to the schools to weed out the dross who get through ... and we all know some are better than others at this.
    As for passing on rubbish teachers vi good references ... it happens in lots of places. Football clubs, design agencies ... basically anywhere there is a contract which makes it hard for an employer to get rid of people. We do have to remember that there are many places where it is easy for employers to get rid of people and this is abused! This is why unions / agents / lawyers make it hard to get rid of people ... But that then leaves it open to abuse by the employee. By having non-QTS teachers employed in a school they are less likely to be in a union and could even be on shorter and less favourable contracts ... and so the Govt is happy by getting super-specialists in to schools, schools have more flexibility and the pupils / students get a richer experience!

    But knowledge does not make you a good teacher ... but the lack of QTS does not mean you are a rubbish teacher. It means that schools will have to work harder to select the right people and make sure they have checks in place to deal with it when it doesn't work. Although this is an OFSTED role to check I'm sure most fouls can see it falling down.

    The best suggestions I have seen so far are around team teaching. You have 2 classes together and one QTS teacher and one specialist. I've seen it done well with HLTAs, SEN specialists, ICT / CS specialists already and this is a good way of improving the knowledge / experience of the non-specialist as well as ensuring the specialist is kept an eye on until everyone is sure they are up to scratch and have shown they have the ability to teach / coach / instruct / mentor / facilitate learning. (Specialist and non-specialist are simply terms to separate the non-QTS specialist and the subject teacher who might not have the level of experience of the application of the subject in the outside world).

    I am sure that it *could* work, but only in a school where they are switched on.

    Wise and fair, but the issues still remains that Gove is unfit to govern the education department.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook View Post
    As for QTS ... It does not guarantee a good teacher nor does it guarantee the required specialist knowledge ... But it is a tried and tested way of getting people into the profession.
    But knowledge does not make you a good teacher ... but the lack of QTS does not mean you are a rubbish teacher.
    The best suggestions I have seen so far are around team teaching. You have 2 classes together and one QTS teacher and one specialist.
    I'm not sure I 100% agree. Are you advocating larger class sizes? Maybe that's okay if the pupil:teacher ratio is maintained or improved, but it does set alarm bells ringing for some reason. Surely the best answer (especially with an aging population) is to attract more professionals into teaching as a second profession and help them through QTS while at the same time actively discouraging (but not barring) students from entering QTS straight out of uni? It seems to me that QTS should be a minimum standard for educating our kids, but what we want is more worldly wise and experienced individuals in the profession.

    We also have to remember the largest slice of any schools budget is staffing costs. Having two teachers per class (one QTS, one specialist) will be expensive. We often have these discussions here with IT. I am actively advocating a 1 device per pupil model. However in the back of my mind I know that to afford it we may have to make staffing sacrifices which may impact teaching and learning in other ways - larger class sizes and/or less TAs, more contact time, more teaching outside of specialist areas, etc.

    Ultimately I think models such as this are never a one size fits all approach and should never be mandated by central government, however attractive it might look on paper. I believe it should be the responsibility of governing body and senior leadership team to set a school curriculum and teaching practices.

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    I've found this thread really fascinating: thank youto everyone who has posted here and stimulated my thinking.

    In the independent sector it's always been open to schools to appoint unqualified staff. All I can do here is to provide anecdotal evidence of the outcomes. In one school a teacher was I believe originally hired because of his expertise as a sports coach (no, not as a PE teacher). His highest paper qualification as far as I know were a couple of poor A Levels. He was allocated to the lowest maths set every year, up to GCSE, and produced results which regularly out-performed the sets above his, which were taught by maths graduates. In a different school there was a highly-qualified scientist without QTS; his subject did well but the gaps I found were in his understanding of what pupils were likely to be able to do, or not to do, depending on their developmental psychology. I suspect he'd have been more successful with some training. On balance in recent years when we are screening CVs for potential new staff we would look at both qualified and unqualified staff with an open mind, though with a leaning towards the qualified. What matters is the success of the teaching and learning - if that means hiring older staff who cost more, so be it. My HT makes a point of not considering cost when selecting staff, focusing on getting the right person.

    There are two conflicting pressures on the education reforms which I can identify.

    Firstly, there is concern that schools are not providing the success in education that the electorate, employers, parents and politicians want. This is the underlying issue in the league table discussions in this thread. Politicians have a need to "do something" - that's why we have a Secretary of State, after all, and there is no doubt that Gove wants to improve things: it's just that there are different views on how to do it. Once politicians start reforming and intervening, they need to have control, whether directly or at arm's length via LEAs, Ofsted, Ofqual and the rest of the alphabet soup. This therefore constrains schools and LEAs in what they do.

    Conservatives traditionally have also valued freedom and independence: and here is the conflict. Conservatives would like in an ideal world to let schools develop and set their own agendas,to decide what and how to teach. Many schools would like to do this too - though I have met many who would be pretty scared if they were given real freedom. Because politicians have to show they are doing things, and perhaps because they don't trust everyone to use independence fully, they apply constraints. Would any Secretary of State or LEA be prepared to have a school like this A. S. Neill's Summerhill School on their books? Or is that only possible in the independent sector?

    To return to the topic - petitioning to have Michael Gove removed - I won't be signing it. I think we should use more thoughtful methods: writing to our MPs, writing to Gove, writing to his junior ministers, avoiding the green ink and gross claims but presenting careful concise arguments.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bossman View Post
    So just because you have a teaching degree that makes you better at teaching someone how to build a bridge or cook a soufle better than a fully qualified professional who actually does it for a living day in day out? What a pile of CARP!!!
    But IT ISN'T. I know people who are engineers who can't even explain what they do day in and day out to the educated layman, never mind knuckle-dragging teenagers. They are very good at what they do, but can't teach. Hell, I do a lot of stage lighting & sound, and I'm damned if I can get anything beyond the basic concepts across to others. I'm not a teacher, and I know and accept that.

    I'm sure some can do it, and would welcome their input into the education system, but to be so simplistic as to drag in any engineer... Well, it is at a Govian level of thinking.

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