Setting and Raising Teaching Standards


Over the last few weeks, in fact since developing my e-Portfolio, I have been looking at the teaching standards. Initially I started looking at the UK standards. I remember ticking them off during my PGCE year and again during my induction year… After that they sort of fizzled away. I had shown I was doing all the things a good teacher does, surely I always would. Suddenly, 6 year downs the track and I have no collated evidence that I am still doing all the right sort of stuff and no idea what specific goals I need to focus on. I need a check list.

After having a go at compiling evidence for the Core teaching standards as laid out in the UK, I then realised that this was a document that I should not be working on alone. Conversations around the evidence and the standards themselves are really important so I introduced this as part of our weekly departmental meetings. As I work in NZ it was appropriate to create a new form to collate evidence against the NZ teaching standards.  As it is likely that would be returning to the UK, I didn’t want to lose that work I had already done and these conversations are helping me complete my original form as well. Now I have found that the UK are changing their standards. They have started by combining the QTS standards with the Core standards and and it seems that the Post Threshold, Excellence and Advanced Skills standards are being replaced by a single narrative that describes the characteristics of a Master Teacher. This move was motivated by the need to have a clear baseline rather than constant, gradual increments normally demarked by different superalitives. It has also been simplified to focus of the key elements of great teaching rather than an exhaustive and prescriptive list of knowledge, skills and understanding. 

Interestingly, this new UK format is very similar to the layout of the NZ standards, though NZ does still have separate graduate standards. The key seems to be the need to demonstrate an appropriate range of practise as described by the bullet points under each statement. Well, enough blogging – I have another spread sheet to create – Thank goodness for copy and paste!


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