01 SES 13 A, Practices of Mentoring (Part 2): PAEDEIA - Educating Teachers for Europe's Future
Symposium continues from 01 SES 12 A to be continued in 01 SES 14 A
This symposium is the second part of a triple symposium, entitled “Practices of Mentoring”. In part 1, practices of mentoring in Australia, Finland, Norway and Hungary are studied within the theory of practice architectures. Part 2 introduces innovative practices for teacher induction which have been developed in the European PAEDIEA project. In part 3, the focus is shifted to using ICT in mentoring and problematizing the impact of teacher standards on mentoring practices.
This symposium introduces the results of an international project PAEDEIA (Pedagogical Action for a European Dimension in Educators' Induction Approaches) which is a Comenius Multilateral Project funded by the European Commission. With reference to the Ancient Greek concept of paedeia (or paideia), i.e. the idea of educating excellent and ‘good’ human beings, the project’s mission aims at a), contributing to the European debate about retaining young teachers as change agents through the identification of specific holistic tailor-made induction approaches set up by teacher training and schools in joint cooperation; b), stimulating student teachers and young teachers for laying the foundations for the implementation of the key competences for lifelong learning and especially the interdiciplinary competences which focus on European pro-active, responsible, critical citizenship; and c), providing a platform for discussion about the roles and competences of school managers, school teachers/mentors and teacher trainers regarding the training, induction and professional development of next generation teachers.
In a time when Europe wants to become a knowledge-based society, member-states are facing obstacles to reach this goal, especially in education. While the formulated eight key competences for lifelong learning (European Commission, 2007) demonstrate the foundations of what European citizens are meant to accomplish, some member-states are confronted with a lack of teachers, or a high dropout rate of young teachers in primary and secondary education (OECD, 2005). The currently published handbook for policymakers (European Commission, 2010) points to the lack of induction programs to tackle this high dropout rate. In particular a provision of ‘an incremental approach to enable practitioners to ‘grow’ into their professional roles’ is missing (p.13). This points to induction programs, which additionally can be an aid to overcome the practice shock on three levels: the professional, social and personal (Kelchtermans & Ballet, 2002). Through the involvement of the key educational players, i.e. school mentors and managers, peers, experts form teacher training and through setting up national support groups of diverse stakeholders, these induction programs would be an asset bridging the gap between the former initial teacher education (ITE) and continuous professional development (CPD) of teachers within schools and jointly they could form the three pillars of teacher education.
But induction programs are not enough to retain beginning teachers; they need to be challenged as well. As new teachers have ideals when entering the profession, they could get disappointed when they are not involved in responsible tasks in addition to teaching classes; this would be a loss of talent and a waste of their potential as change agents (European Commission 2010, p.15). When this happens, new challenges outside education could trigger them leaving the profession after all.
The symposium consists of three presentations. In the first presentation, held by Lejo Swachten, the philosophical and theoretical background of the project is presented with its focus on the Ancient Greek concept of paedeia and how it might contribute to contemporary ethics for the teaching profession. The second paper will introduce the innovative induction programs, i.e. the Paedeia Cafés organized in three different cultural settings with their local constraints and challenges: Finland, Sweden and Turkey. The third presentation is based on the evaluation data from the project.
European Commission. (2007). Key Competences for Lifelong Learning: A European Reference Framework. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities. European Commission. (2010). Developing Coherent and System-wide Induction Programmes for Beginning Teachers: a Handbook for Policymakers. European Commission Staff Working Document SEC, 538 final. Brussels: European Commission Kelchtermans, G. & Ballet, K. (2002). The micropolitics of teacher induction. A narrative-biographical study on teacher socialisation. Teacher and Teacher Education, 18, 105-120. Kemmis, S. 2014. Education, educational research and the good for humankind. In:H. Heikkinen, J. Moate & M.-K. Lerkkanen (Eds.) Enabling Education. Proceedings of the annual conference of Finnish Educational Research Association FERA 2013. Jyväskylä: Finnish Association for Educational Research 66, 15-68. Kemmis, S., Heikkinen, H., Aspfors, J., Fransson, G. & Edwards-Groves, C. (2014). Mentoring as Contested Practice: Support, Supervision and Collaborative Self-development. Teaching and Teacher Education 43, 154-164. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. (2005). Teachers Matter. Attracting, Developing and Retaining Effective Teachers. Paris: OECD. Shanks, R. (2012). New teachers' individual learning dispositions: a Scottish case study. International Journal of Training and Development 16(3),183-199.
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