Trefor Owens wrote:
Joshua Gibbs wrote:My personal belief is that people should be or have been graded 150 ecf and pass an exam before teaching: what does everyone else think?
My personal belief is that people should be or have been graded 150 ecf and pass an exam before debating teaching: what does everyone else think?
I'd go further than that, Trefor. As well as having reached ECF 150 I think you should have passed the PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate in Education), the qualification would-be teachers have to have if they have an academic degree, before debating teaching.
Seriously, Joshua, where do you get your nonsensical notions from?
I taught maths at Emanuel School in south London from 1978 to 1980 after doing a maths degree followed by a PGCE. I shared one of my A level groups with a more experienced teacher who I was stunned to learn not only didn't have a maths degree (he had a degree in philosophy from an Irish university) but he failed his PGCE. Nevertheless he was regarded as an outstanding teacher by the school, the department and the pupils.
How could this be? Not least because the rules seemed to forbid it. The rules said that if you had an academic degree (as opposed to a teaching degree, a Batchelor of Education) then you had to have a PGCE. As a temporary measure (which had been if force for 10 years at the time and is probably still in force) if your subject was one of the shortage subjects (STEM plus stuff like woodwork, metalwork) then you didn't need a PGCE but couldn't teach if you'd failed your PGCE.
Curious, I buttonholed the teacher the next time we were down the pub to try and find out how it was possible, particularly the failing the PGCE part. The year I'd done mine something like 2 people had failed out about 150 students. You pretty much had to fail the teaching practice to fail. One had psychological problems which made him unsuitable to teach and the other had chronic BO combined with an apparent soap allergy. The school where he did his term's teaching practice complained to the department and sent him back after the first week.
Brian: "Come on, Richard, you've got a good honours degree. How on earth did you fail your PGCE? It's not that difficult. There are massive shortages and they want, need even, everyone to pass."
Richard: "Well, I failed my teaching practice."
Richard: "Yes. The day my supervisor came in to assess me it was all going really well until suddenly a quiet boy at the back of the class who normally just sat there behaving himself got up, ran out to the front, punched me in the nuts and jumped out of the window. Fortunately we were on the ground floor. 'Inability to maintain classroom control' is what they put on the form"
There's no answer to that. I pressed on.
Brian: "But Richard, that's the top maths set we've got, doing double maths. I'm doing the pure, you're doing the applied. I know for a fact that some of the stuff is really difficult particular since you've only got A level maths yourself. Do you even know all the stuff?"
Richard: "This is actually the first year I've had the top set and no, there's quite a lot of stuff I don't know even after I've taught it."
Brian: "So, how is that even possible? How can you teach stuff you don't know?"
Richard: "Well, Baigent and Tinker are both very good. Baigent is better at explaining. When I'm coming up to something I don't understand I usually give Baigent one of the problems I don't understand and ask him to prepare it for the next lesson. Then the next day I'll present the theory from the book and then ask Baigent to come out and do the question on the board explaining it to the rest of us. On the rare occasions when he struggles, rather than step in and play the authoritative teacher role, I turn it into a class discussion which normally gets the answer out but if not gets us to the end of the lesson when I can ask somebody like you, Brian
Ah, but I was so much older then. I'm younger than that now.