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Thread: Mary Hanafin limits teacher training to three years

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    Default Mary Hanafin limits teacher training to three years

    Why does the Minister think that Ireland is unique? If anything, with the added pressure on Irish teachers to teach all the subjects including Irish, surely the standard 3 year teacher preparation course isn't adequate.

    In the UK, a teacher is required to have a four year B.Ed. degree. The same in the US. Australia has instituted the requirement of a four year degree as well.

    Why is the minister so stubborn on this issue? She says that if she moved to a four year B.Ed. then there would be a gap left and there would be a lack of teachers the first year it was instituted.

    Visit www.educationposts.ie and tell me how many primary jobs you see in the whole of Ireland? There are 29 today and most of them are temporary or maternity leave! Where does she think the high demand for teachers is coming from. The INTO has been pushing for a four year programme for at least five years and it's time the Minister listens to them.

    She's done a disservice to teachers by trying to focus on incoming teachers being inadequately trained instead of focussing on class size. Fair play to John Carr for being so polite to her on Prime Time last night.

    In addition, because of the nepotism rife in the area of teacher hiring in Ireland, many teachers are given permanent jobs right out of teacher training college when they haven't even done their probationary year. This means that if they fail the probationary year, they still have a permanent job. This makes a mockery of the whole field of employment law and employing the best person for the job. What ends up happening is teachers get jobs based on who they know.

    See here: http://www.educationposts.ie/forum/view ... hp?id=3058
    http://www.educationposts.ie/forum/view ... hp?id=2330
    http://www.educationposts.ie/forum/view ... hp?id=3044

    Again, the minister sticks her head in the sand and says it's not her place to tell the BOMs and the principals who to hire. Another weasel out of responsibility.

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    Default Re: Mary Hanafin limits teacher training to three years

    Quote Originally Posted by GalwayIndy
    Why does the Minister think that Ireland is unique? If anything, with the added pressure on Irish teachers to teach all the subjects including Irish, surely the standard 3 year teacher preparation course isn't adequate.

    In the UK, a teacher is required to have a four year B.Ed. degree. The same in the US.
    From what I have heard, Ireland has a better education system than the UK or US, which would indicate the extra years training is not needed. I think Hanafin is right on this one.

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    How would you say it's better? Remember, UK and US have had the social problems and influx of immigrants for far longer than Ireland. In addition, it's only recently that children with special needs have been de-institutionalised and included in the mainstream schools.

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    Default Teacher training a barrier to entry

    As Bernard Shaw said, all professions are a conspiracy against the public. They like nothing better than making it as difficult as possible to enter their profession or trade, in order to boost their pay and importance. In the case of Irish public sector workers, job tenure for life, a privilege once reserved for university professors and the aristocracy, coupled with pensions indexed to pay increases (most,maybe all other countries index to inflation only), has spoiled them. Their voracious,incessant demands are always made under the figleaf of serving the public interest.

    As for teachers' unions,it's in their favour that they achieve good pay levels for this very important profession.

    But if they succeed in lengthening the training period, this creates a barrier to entry to teaching for professionals in other fields such as law,science and business who want to switch to teaching. Those professions bring diverse intellectual skills and experience to teaching.

    In any case,what empirical evidence is there that primary teacher training colleges are as good,say,as a liberal arts BA that includes foreign languages? US teacher training colleges which set the pace internationally do not have a reputation for excellence that I've heard of. The curriculums may be too narrowly focussed on educational pedagogy,much of which is faddish.

    Despite their professed knowledge of pedagogy,many if not most Irish teacher training colleges do not teach synthetic phonics,yet there is considerable evidence that this method advances the reading skills of young children by about two years.

    Patslatt

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    Default Re: Teacher training a barrier to entry

    Quote Originally Posted by patslatt
    But if they succeed in lengthening the training period, this creates a barrier to entry to teaching for professionals in other fields such as law,science and business who want to switch to teaching. Those professions bring diverse intellectual skills and experience to teaching.
    Ever heard of the HDip in Education? If you're converting from another degree, it's only a one-year diploma for second level teachers, and 18 months for primary teaching.

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    Default Re: Mary Hanafin limits teacher training to three years

    Quote Originally Posted by GalwayIndy
    Why does the Minister think that Ireland is unique? If anything, with the added pressure on Irish teachers to teach all the subjects including Irish, surely the standard 3 year teacher preparation course isn't adequate.

    In the UK, a teacher is required to have a four year B.Ed. degree. The same in the US. Australia has instituted the requirement of a four year degree as well.

    Why is the minister so stubborn on this issue? She says that if she moved to a four year B.Ed. then there would be a gap left and there would be a lack of teachers the first year it was instituted.

    Visit www.educationposts.ie and tell me how many primary jobs you see in the whole of Ireland? There are 29 today and most of them are temporary or maternity leave! Where does she think the high demand for teachers is coming from. The INTO has been pushing for a four year programme for at least five years and it's time the Minister listens to them.

    She's done a disservice to teachers by trying to focus on incoming teachers being inadequately trained instead of focussing on class size. Fair play to John Carr for being so polite to her on Prime Time last night.

    In addition, because of the nepotism rife in the area of teacher hiring in Ireland, many teachers are given permanent jobs right out of teacher training college when they haven't even done their probationary year. This means that if they fail the probationary year, they still have a permanent job. This makes a mockery of the whole field of employment law and employing the best person for the job. What ends up happening is teachers get jobs based on who they know.

    See here: http://www.educationposts.ie/forum/view ... hp?id=3058
    http://www.educationposts.ie/forum/view ... hp?id=2330
    http://www.educationposts.ie/forum/view ... hp?id=3044

    Again, the minister sticks her head in the sand and says it's not her place to tell the BOMs and the principals who to hire. Another weasel out of responsibility.
    Also, all Secondary Teachers have to do 4 years ie 3 Years for Primary Degree and a One Year Dip.

    All Teaching Students in the University of Limerick do 4 Years full Teaching Degrees!!
    For a Liberal Fianna Fáil perspective, take a look at www.donnachamaguire.com

  7. #7

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    Does every public sector group think that their group is the single most important group in the state and that they matter so much that they can tell the government (elected) what policy is suitable or not? Public sector workers such as the teachers need to realize that they are in fact workers- not managers, decision makers, law makers or public representatives. They get paid well for a very short working year and I think it would be more in the public interest if they focused on teaching and just shut up. Matters regarding policy are in the hands of the Minister and her department and should not become an issue for unions to mouth off on. There are educational experts and public representatives whose job is to handle such matters- let teachers focus on teaching better because that is what they are paid for.
    The political establishment lacks both vision and courage.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by irishpeoplearewhingers
    Does every public sector group think that their group is the single most important group in the state and that they matter so much that they can tell the government (elected) what policy is suitable or not? Public sector workers such as the teachers need to realize that they are in fact workers- not managers, decision makers, law makers or public representatives. They get paid well for a very short working year and I think it would be more in the public interest if they focused on teaching and just shut up. Matters regarding policy are in the hands of the Minister and her department and should not become an issue for unions to mouth off on. There are educational experts and public representatives whose job is to handle such matters- let teachers focus on teaching better because that is what they are paid for.
    Yes, but teachers are the single most important group in the state being that they teach the next generation of Irish people. They do not get well paid for a high-intensity job, where they have to take abuse from children (sometimes physcial), deal with apathetic or abusive parents etc. they have very long hours when you take into consideration the extra-curricular work, homework correction, class preparation (app. 2 hours per night). The only perk is the holidays, and if you took that away you'd see a dramatic drop in the number of available teachers. They don't get paid while they are in their training Hdip. year, even though they are doing actual class work. I could go on, but I'm sure you knew all this.

    THis or that group should "just shut up" is an anti-democratic idea. And as for:

    There are educational experts and public representatives whose job is to handle such matters
    Only one week ago, on good advice from 'educational experts and public representatives' Mary Hanafin decided it would be in schools best interest to reduce the number of public-paid pyschologists in favour of funding schools to get private pyshologists. She was told in no uncertain what an idiotic idea that was (and it is breath-takingly stupid) by the Prinicipals' assocation and had to row back on the idea no more than 48 hours later. Do you think the principals should have just 'shut up' and got on with running their schools and let 'informed people' make decisions over their heads??????

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by secularireland
    Quote Originally Posted by irishpeoplearewhingers
    Does every public sector group think that their group is the single most important group in the state and that they matter so much that they can tell the government (elected) what policy is suitable or not? Public sector workers such as the teachers need to realize that they are in fact workers- not managers, decision makers, law makers or public representatives. They get paid well for a very short working year and I think it would be more in the public interest if they focused on teaching and just shut up. Matters regarding policy are in the hands of the Minister and her department and should not become an issue for unions to mouth off on. There are educational experts and public representatives whose job is to handle such matters- let teachers focus on teaching better because that is what they are paid for.
    Yes, but teachers are the single most important group in the state being that they teach the next generation of Irish people. They do not get well paid for a high-intensity job, where they have to take abuse from children (sometimes physcial), deal with apathetic or abusive parents etc. they have very long hours when you take into consideration the extra-curricular work, homework correction, class preparation (app. 2 hours per night). The only perk is the holidays, and if you took that away you'd see a dramatic drop in the number of available teachers. They don't get paid while they are in their training Hdip. year, even though they are doing actual class work. I could go on, but I'm sure you knew all this.

    THis or that group should "just shut up" is an anti-democratic idea. And as for:

    There are educational experts and public representatives whose job is to handle such matters
    Only one week ago, on good advice from 'educational experts and public representatives' Mary Hanafin decided it would be in schools best interest to reduce the number of public-paid pyschologists in favour of funding schools to get private pyshologists. She was told in no uncertain what an idiotic idea that was (and it is breath-takingly stupid) by the Prinicipals' assocation and had to row back on the idea no more than 48 hours later. Do you think the principals should have just 'shut up' and got on with running their schools and let 'informed people' make decisions over their heads??????
    I don't want to start slagging off teachers by claiming that they are not important, but they are not the most important workers in the state. All you need is a mediocre degree and a H. Dip and you have a teacher. They are also quite well paid, as most public servants are these days, but they seem to forget that being a public servant means that you serve i.e. you do what you are told. We can't all be managers and public servants should not forget this.
    It may well be undemocratic for me to say that they should shut up and do their job but I would prefer to get the services I pay for than to have to listen to another bunch of self-rightous 2.2s tell me how the world should be. In a democracy, power lies with the elected government who can be changed after 4 or 5 years, not with the staff who are virtually impossible to fire and who are paid at a premium to the overwhelming majority of Irish workers. The problem with this country is that the elected government is constantly forced to pander to interests who have no electoral mandate.
    As for the school psycholoigst issue, the right to make that decision lies solely with the government. School principals should be consulted but they should never be in a position to bicker with those who are their superiors. So to answer your question- yes, I think that the department of education should be able to make managerial decisions whether the principals like it or not. Furthermore, I think that any teacher/principal who fails to implement policy should be fined and fired. There is no way that this society can continue to prosper if people do not do their jobs and if people refuse to accept the government's right to govern.
    Yet, I would be well on for giving the teachers greater support. The type of nonsense they have to put up with from students beggars belief. It is time to give teachers the power to exclude trouble-makers from the classroom. If some knacker is causing hassle, I fail to see why a professional teacher should waste longer than necessary trying to correct him/her. In my opinion, it is time to go after parents- it should be a parents duty to ensure that the kid behaves in class, and I think that if they fail to do so, the state owes them nothing.
    Teachers are pretty important, but not so important that they can dictate the terms under which they work.
    The political establishment lacks both vision and courage.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by irishpeoplearewhingers
    I don't want to start slagging off teachers by claiming that they are not important, but they are not the most important workers in the state.
    Okay, my contention is that they are as they are directly involved in educating the nation's youth, the citizens of tomorrow, the politicians, doctors etc. etc. of the future. Can you name a more important service than this.

    All you need is a mediocre degree and a H. Dip and you have a teacher.
    There is far more to teaching that this. And, it is often actually the people who don't ace every exam, who are average students themselves, who can understand the problems with learning something that can help kids who are struggling the best. Those with top class degrees, those people who are really intelligent, you often find can't come down the level to communicate the idea to a student because the idea came so easily to them. So, a degree, while necessary, isn't the be all and end all. Teaching is about far more than qualifications.

    They are also quite well paid, as most public servants are these days, but they seem to forget that being a public servant means that you serve i.e. you do what you are told.
    1. Define well-paid.

    2. You do what you're told to a certain point, as in all jobs.

    We can't all be managers and public servants should not forget this.
    A lot of public servants are managers. Good managers listen to their staff. Every school has regular staff meetings.

    It may well be undemocratic for me to say that they should shut up and do their job but I would prefer to get the services I pay for than to have to listen to another bunch of self-rightous 2.2s tell me how the world should be.
    When they came for the teachers I said nothing.....etc. etc.
    No-one is telling you anything. Teachers have the right to have a say about the system that they work on the coalface of. And "self-righteous 2.2s" makes you sound like a elitest snob. As I explained before these people often make the best teachers.


    In a democracy, power lies with the elected government who can be changed after 4 or 5 years, not with the staff who are virtually impossible to fire and who are paid at a premium to the overwhelming majority of Irish workers.
    1. What figures are you working off as regards salary?

    2. I would agree that it is too hard to fire bad teachers once they are made permanent (however it is notoriously difficult for most teachers, unless they have contacts, to get a permanent position in a school. Many teachers work from year to year contracts not knowing what situation they will face in September.

    The problem with this country is that the elected government is constantly forced to pander to interests who have no electoral mandate.
    No, the problem with this country is that the elected government is a bunch of self-serving ar*es. Recently the government thought it was acceptable to give schools a once-off payment of €4000 each to replace gym equipment because the government cares about obesity. Bullsh*t. €4000 in a school of 500 wouldn't cover one year's PE requirements and that's if the school has a sports facility in the first place. It's a derisory, shallow gesture.

    Also, a couple tried to take the government to task over the treatment of autistic children in this country, which is an admittedly appalling shameful service far below European norms (admitted by the government) and the Dept. of Education fought this couple tooth and nail all the way and managed to deny a proper service. Mary Hanafin had the good sense to finally appear a least a little shame-faced about it in today's interview in THe Times. Should the group of parents with autistic kids now just 'shut up' and let the government get on with their job. You might think, that has nothing to do with me, but wait until their is an autisitc child in your family and or in a friend's family and you'll see quickly enough the real face of the government. That is why I find your selfish 'shut up and serve me' attitude objectionable.

    Also, there are schools who won't take on special needs children even though the law dictates that they must (some schools I know even take funding for special needs and don't admit any special needs kids). Will the minister do anything about it? Will she ******************************.

    As for the school psycholoigst issue, the right to make that decision lies solely with the government. School principals should be consulted but they should never be in a position to bicker with those who are their superiors. So to answer your question- yes, I think that the department of education should be able to make managerial decisions whether the principals like it or not.
    Only in this case they made a very wrong decision which would have impacted on the weaker students and would have left them behind, and eventually the kids that get left behind get bored, frustrated, disenfrancished and therein lies the roots of person who will rob your car my friend. Oh, but I know, teachers aren't that important. They should shut up when they can see that the government is making an arse of it. The dept. realised they were making such an ar*e of it that they reversed the decision in 48 hours - and you still say that the principals should have said nothing.

    Furthermore, I think that any teacher/principal who fails to implement policy should be fined and fired.
    Yeah, I think with the limited resources of the state we might be less interested in penalising principals who don't implement policy. Did you see the survey which said that well over 30% were on the verge of quitting already. Oh, but oh no, let's tell them that we'll fine and fire them if they don't do exactly everything that they say. Brilliant. Fu*king genius idea.

    There is no way that this society can continue to prosper if people do not do their jobs and if people refuse to accept the government's right to govern
    .

    Look, I don't think you get it. The government works for us, therfore if we think the government is making an ar*e of something it is on them to tell us why they aren't.

    Yet, I would be well on for giving the teachers greater support. The type of nonsense they have to put up with from students beggars belief. It is time to give teachers the power to exclude trouble-makers from the classroom.
    They have that right, but think it out for a second. Where does the student in the hallway go, who will look after him/her, what if the student comes to harm.....you need another classroom and teacher just to house the unruly kids

    If some knacker is causing hassle,
    DOn't use the pejortaive "knacker" please. It is a derisory term used for travellers and has no place in proper discourse.

    I fail to see why a professional teacher should waste longer than necessary trying to correct him/her.
    THis might come a big shock. The world is not black and white. Someone who is 'causing trouble' might be causing it for all types of reasons (trouble in school, trouble at home, bad diet, etc. etc.) and the professional teachers job is to try and bring all the students along with the class. Banning pupils, expelling them leads to boredom etc. and now someone is outside robbing your car - well done.

    In my opinion, it is time to go after parents- it should be a parents duty to ensure that the kid behaves in class, and I think that if they fail to do so, the state owes them nothing.
    The state owes every child an education. It is in the constitution. Some parents are maddeningly apathetic and it is often the teacher's job to work with these people to get them interested in their child's education. Very often these parents are actually intimidated by schools because they were left behind by them (are you starting to see the circle, and why goo teachers might be vitally important to soceity at large...just a little?). OF course this meeting of parents etc. etc. is not paid for by the state as it outside the school hours for the permanent teacher or outside class hours for the non-permanent. But, sure, sure, these teachers have an easy ride - I understand.

    Teachers are pretty important, but not so important that they can dictate the terms under which they work.
    Everyone has the right to dictate the terms under which they work. It's called terms of employment. If your boss tries to ****************************** you over I'd bet you'd be the first to cry foul. Why can't the teachers? In the end these are people who see how it really is.

    I have a personal issue with this as my wife was a maths teacher (she's having babies at the moment) She has an okay degree in chemistry and a H dip. She took a repeat leaving cert class, 14 people, in honours maths from a C+ average to an A+ average because she knew how hard it was to do knours maths. She is empathetic in the extreme with the tougher kids and has real results in one to one tuition (which she was never trained to do). She bought 30 calculators out of her salary for kids who couldn't afford them (when she was in a school in a very disadvantaged area). The school couldn't afford to but these people calculators. She wasn't paid for her holidays during her firts three years as a teacher and she wasn't paid at all while she was on her H dip. year all while we were trying to save for a house. She's been physically and verbally abused in classes. She's been spit at, gossiped about, come back one September to find that her maths hours and the permanent job she was in line for had been given to some lad who's mother taught in the school (she left the school then) and was offered 12 hours religion (22 hours is max. teaching time) which reduced her salary by half. She was five years teaching and she probably had to go another couple to get a permanent position. This is a good teacher. If you're telling me she hasn't got the right to scream from the highest hill "the system is a ******************************ing sham" I think you need to move to a communist country.

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