Teacher Education

Several sessions at the GTE at the weekend reminded me of some thinking on Teacher Education.

There were lots of discussions on the nature of knowledge, particularly in terms of the body of knowledge that geography teachers should have, and how they get it. I was reminded of a speech that Michael Gove made in 2010 at the National College of School Leaders' conference.

Link to the speech here.

This what he had to say about teachers, and how they are trained:

Teachers grow as professionals by allowing their work to be observed by other professionals, and observing the very best in their field, in turn.

Teaching is a high status profession which draws its recruits from among the highest performing graduates. There is a strong culture of professional development which encourages teachers to improve their craft by learning from others while also deepening their academic knowledge.

Teaching is a craft and it is best learnt as an apprentice observing a master craftsman or woman. Watching others, and being rigorously observed yourself as you develop, is the best route to acquiring mastery in the classroom. Which is why I also intend to abolish those rules which limit the ability of school leaders to observe teachers at work. Nothing should get in the way of making sure we have the best possible cadre of professionals ready to inspire the next generation.

Is this really the best way to learn how to be a teacher?