Monday, 22 April 2013

I'll keep...

I love teaching. Don't mistake what I'm about to say as contradicting that but... Thank goodness for holidays! Two weeks of  spontaneous toilet breaks and cups of tea and sleeping past 5:45am... BLISS!

The flipside of it being holiday time is that it means I've finished my latest contract. I spent four weeks in a new school teaching a group of delightful little five year old people. More about them and what we did together later, because right now I need to talk about teacher standards. 

There's been the usual bashing coverage of teachers in popular media recently PLUS a huge focus on Australian education in general due to the Gonski review.  A lot of the conversations I've heard and read have focused on how much better our education system would be "if teachers were better trained or just put in more effort". As a new teacher this drives me wild!

I am never likely to say that there isn't room for improvement in both our pre-service teacher education programmes or ongoing teacher standards BUT... I want to take these naysayers into classrooms; staff rooms; teachers' homes and cars and show them just how much effort goes into being the kind of teacher we all aspire to be. I want to point to the AITSL standards and ask how they think we progress through the four stages if not without training and development. I want to find a way to share with them the fact that for many of us teaching is not a job but a way of life because of the commitment we give to the children in our care. I want to know what happened in their schooling to cause such negative perceptions of teachers. And I want to have their child in my class so that I can show them just how wrong they are.

We all know that this won't happen though and so my next best option is to keep working toward being the teacher I aspire to be. I'll keep taking every opportunity I find to develop my skill and knowledge base. I'll keep making opportunities! I'll keep talking and networking with other professionals I admire. I'll keep reading. I'll keep writing. I'll keep going. And I'll keep teaching.

So, my questions to you are these:

  • How do you as a teacher demonstrate your commitment and development of professional standards? 
  • How do you as a parent want to see these demonstrated to you?