01 SES 13 B, Teacher Professional Learning As a Response to Issues of Teacher Retention and Recruitment: Perspectives from Iceland, Sweden And England
Teacher retention is a current, and widespread, serious issue (Guha, Hyler and Darling-Hammond, 2017). Despite an increase in the routes into teaching in England through a range of Initial Teacher Education (ITE) programmes (Whitty, 2014, 2017) teacher recruitment and retention remains problematic (Carmichael, 2017). In England it is exacerbated by factors including professional status, workload, accountability and public sector pay freezes (Carmichael, 2017). Simultaneously, there is increasing awareness of the importance of quality teaching and its impact on school performance and children’s outcomes (Hanushek, 2011). Investing in teachers is a model successfully adopted in other countries, such a Finland where teachers have greater professional status, pay and autonomy than in England (Carmichael, 2017). One way of investing in teachers is to provide high quality continuing professional development (CPD) that addresses both personal and professional aspirations. Higher Education awards potentially offer career progression towards leadership, personal fulfilment (Donaldson, 2011) and address an understanding that ITE is, of itself, insufficient to prepare individuals for a long-term teaching career (Donaldson, 2011). This is echoed by the BERA-RSA enquiry ‘Research and the Teaching Profession: building the capacity for a self-improving system’ (2014). In response, some schools are proactively engaging in professional learning including Masters awards with the aim of retaining and developing quality staff required for the challenges of teaching in 21st century. This paper reports on a study exploring teachers’ perceptions of the value and accessibility of Masters level CPD in teacher retention. Analysis of semi-structured interviews and questionnaires provides insights into personal and professional implications from such CPD and offers suggestions for teacher retention.
BERA (2014) Research and the Teaching Professions: building the capacity for self- improving system. https://www.bera.ac.uk/project/research-and-teacher-education accessed 15/1/2016 Carmichael, N., (2017). Recruitment and retention of teachers: Fifth Report of Session 2016–17 Donaldson, G., (2011). Teaching Scotland’s future: report of a review of teacher education in Scotland. Scottish Government (Scotland). Guha, R., Hyler, ME., Darling-Hammond, L., (2017)The Teacher Residency A Practical Path to Recruitment and Retention. American Educator aft.org Hanushek, E., (2011) The economic value of higher teacher quality Economics of Education Review Volume 30, Issue 3, June 2011, Pages 466-479 Whitty, G., (2014) Recent Developments in teacher training and their consequences for the “University project” in education. Oxford Review of Education Vol. 40, Iss. 4, 2014 Whitty, G., (2017) The Marketization of Teacher Education: Threat or Opportunity? A Companion to Research in Teacher Education pp 373-383
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