Graduates with first-class degrees will be eligible for the most generous bursaries to teach shortage subjects such as science and maths, The Daily Telegraph has learnt.
In an overhaul of the system of teacher training in England, ministers will announce the introduction of new personality tests – combined with tougher English and maths exams – to weed out the weakest applicants.
As PJ O\’Rourke has pointed out, the only people who don\’t know what is wrong with education are those who have not dated an El Ed major.
Or, in the English sense, those who have not remembered that back when, when the current generation of senior teachers were getting their training, you needed a couple of A s and a B to get into Cambridge say, and two E s to get into teacher training college (yes, true, Sion Hill).
If you\’re plucking your teachers from the dim it should be no surprise that you get dim teachers.
Now it\’s also true that you don\’t need to be earth shatteringly bright to run a class of five year olds: not in the way that you do need to be to run a high energy physics lab. The dealing with 5 year old tantrums is the same, true, but….
But while there may be a point to getting the bright to be teachers I\’m deeply unsure that it\’s actually a good one. I have a very strong feeling that we\’d actually be best off scrapping the teacher training colleges entirely. A degree, any degree, plus 6 weeks hands on training in how to manage a classroom and off you go. At secondary level, perhaps your degree should at least be associated with what you\’re teaching.
And to be honest, I\’m not even sure that a degree is a necessary part of it. Yes, there\’s always the cute kid who is brighter than the teacher (not, given the above, all that difficult) but the vast majority of teaching is trying to beat a certain portion of the accumulated wisdom of mankind into babes and sucklings. I\’m simply not sure that a degree is required to teach the ABC and 123 part of it. Nor anything at all really, up to perhaps (perhaps the step before) AS level.
I do know that private schools do not have to demand a post graduate teaching course or degree and they may or may not require a degree at all. And we do generally think that the teaching (for more complex reasons than just this) is better in the private sector. So is a degree necessary at all?