A group of eminent higher education and school experts will advise the Australian Government on improving teacher education.
Minister for Education, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, said Australian Catholic University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Greg Craven, will chair the eight-member Teacher Education Ministerial Advisory Group.
“Lifting the quality, professionalism and status of the teaching profession is at the heart of the Government’s Students First platform,” Mr Pyne said.
“I thank the members of the expert group for taking up this task so we can ensure the quality of Australian teaching is world class, and that our teachers have the preparation and support they need to succeed.”
Reporting later this year, the group will undertake extensive public and stakeholder consultation while focusing on three key areas:
• Pedagogical approaches: the ways teachers teach their students, and the different ways teaching and learning can occur.
• Subject content: how well teachers understand the content of subjects they are teaching, and
• Professional experience: opportunities for pre-service teachers to put theory into practice through quality in-school learning experiences.
“I have asked the group to conduct a benchmark research study of world’s best practice in initial teacher education programmes,” Mr Pyne said.
“We want to build on world standards for initial teacher education programmes and explore how best practice can be implemented into teaching and classrooms in our own schools.”
The group will identify gaps in current teacher education, the main areas to improve and recommended implementation timeframes.
The Advisory Group will also incorporate the work initially planned to be undertaken by a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Ministerial Advisory Board to ensure these subjects get more attention during teacher preparation.
The Minister believes the expert Teacher Education Ministerial Advisory Group is best placed to examine teacher education in Australia and as such, has revoked the earlier Ministerial Direction to the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) to undertake a review of teacher education.
Under the Students First approach, the Australian Government will work with the states and territories in 2014 by focussing on four key areas that will make a difference to students:
• teacher quality
• principal autonomy
• parental engagement
• strengthening the curriculum.
For further information, visit: www.studentsfirst.gov.au.
For further information on the Teacher Education Ministerial Advisory Group members, and to view the Terms of Reference, visit: http://www.studentsfirst.gov.au/teacher-education-ministerial-advisory-group.