THANKS to everyone who’s added to the coversation recent posts about Retraining Australia. To move the conversation along; I’d like to raise a point, which I am sure can be explained by PR; but not through pedagogy. Public Education advertising on TV and Radio has promoted the fact that there is a qualified teaching in every classroom; a claim refuted often by Unions.
Here’s an extract from a letter from a 2008 letter, to the NSW Teacher’s Federation from DET. It’s amazing how many PDF’s the DET seem to leave online. In it; the clearly state that there is a qualified teacher in every room. Qualified, as in B.Ed perhaps; but certainly not qualified in running netbooks, wifi and IWBs in the classroom in the spirit of the ‘Ruddy Revolution”.
Chances are the teacher is not ‘qualified’ to use the equipment and the students are more ‘net savvy’ than those teaching them. As parents – we have to demand quality assurance; that after we take on the risk of accepting the netbook; that the teacher will be able to teach with it. Else why bother?
We are not yet seeing any public education (national curriculum or otherwise) definitions / attribute of 21st Century Students are – and therefore cannot ‘teach’ them. There is as many in the thread have said a fundamental failure to deal with retraining and reliance of the professionalism and support of early adopters (which is a misconception – as these teachers are in fact long term supporters).
So what is the definition of a qualified, competent 21st Century teacher – according to the Digital Revolution – is the an ISTE NETs for teachers we are yet to see?
Perhaps; if parents and the public – began seeing crafted messages around the fact that many teachers are ill-equipped, un-prepared and un-qualified to teach in the ‘vein’ of the Digital Revolution – we might begin to see some real focus on investment in people; not just atom powered netbooks.
The changes to staffing in the current transfer system place place even greater pressures equity. There are mixed messages on DET public pages – that give the impression that social media is being embedded into learning; but the reality is vastly different. I find it hard to even do PD in DET school using Web2.0; the list of banned sites almost cripples it. How then can staff in schools do it either?
In the last few comments; there are clearly EPIC levels of change needed in public education to ensure kids don’t have to ‘power down’ at school. If that’s the case – why send kids to school?
In the mean time; I’m still wide open to the idea of starting Virtual PD and High School. Anyone, anyone, anyone?