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Minister, is it worthwhile training as a teacher?

1 November 2012

Minister, is it worthwhile training as a teacher?

The Education Minister needs to immediately clarify whether teaching qualifications will be optional for people wanting teacher registration, to give certainty to hundreds of young people poised to train as teachers next year, the Green Party said today

Partnership School Working Group head Catherine Isaac has caused confusion today by telling media that degrees and experience in science and other qualifications could be a great basis for professionals to be registered as teachers, instead of qualifications in teaching.

“Catherine Isaac seems to be totally unaware that teachers are already required to have a degree in those and other subjects before they embark on an additional year of training in teaching,” Green Party education spokesperson Catherine Delahunty said.

The Green Party agrees with almost everyone involved in education that training in how to teach – on top of subject expertise - is absolutely fundamental to preparing a person to teach a room full of kids.

“I’ve met some amazing PhDs who would be the first to tell you they’d have no idea how to manage a year 11 biology class,” Ms Delahunty said.

“The Government is all over the place on this issue.

Earlier this year it announced that a post graduate qualification in teaching, rather than a degree level one, would be compulsory from next year. Now its indicating no qualification may be needed at all.

“The Minister must front up and clarify to students who are currently enrolling: Do they need a post graduate qualification or not?

“If, as part of the Teacher’s Council review, the Minister is considering allowing untrained people to be registered as teachers she must come clean with that now.

“Ms Isaac’s extreme right wing views on education are those of the Act Party which is wagging the Government’s tail on education policy.

“If teacher education was unnecessary, what does the National/Act Government think the education departments of our best universities and teacher institutions been doing all these decades? Teachers who hold teaching certificates could rightly feel completely undermined by this Government,” Ms Delahunty said.

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