Anybody can teach!

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I wish I could say this was some kind of practical joke; that this had appeared on a whimsical website poking fun at government policy. However this is no joke, and nobody is laughing.

The South Leeds Academy are in need of two maths teachers, but not just any maths teachers. Those with any sort of qualifications to teach are deemed surplus to requirements. Indeed those who have the experience and expertise to assist pupils adequately are going to be immediately overlooked. They needn’t apply. The South Leeds Academy epitomize a worrying transformation in the education system in recent years.

When Michael Gove removed the requirement for QTS in academies, the rhetoric was of professionals such as scientists, engineers, musicians and linguists teaching pupils. I doubt anybody could argue that the above advert isn’t looking for professionals, for professionals are almost always qualified. There isn’t even a mention of a degree in the advert, nor even of A-Levels. Basic GCSE grades are deemed to be enough. Surely they will require ten GCSEs? No. Only four. Four GCSE grades A*-C are all that are required to teach these days in what is clearly a horrible ploy to cut costs.

Michael Gove on a school visit

“What’s that? No QTS? Fantastic!”

The fact that they specifically ask for non-qualified teachers is a sinister and sickening development. On this pay scale the ‘lucky’ candidate will earn anything from £16,856 to £26,052, though my money would be on a figure on the lower end of that scale. They can also look forward to the fact that they will be back on the scrap heap by the end of July, though I’d imagine there may just be an opening come September again.

Simply put, non-qualified teachers are cheaper. But so too are they ill equipped to deal with the erratic nature of the school system at the moment, the implantation of the new curriculum, the preparation of pupils for major examinations and the robust nature of accountability that teachers encounter daily. The advert says that experience in a similar role would be ‘desirable’. How this isn’t essential is beyond me.

I wonder how the other teachers in this academy feel? I wonder what the parents will think of unqualified teachers and the fact that the schools leadership are actively seeking them out? Where are the professionals Michael Gove spoke of. If you want to see what MPs voted for last month, here it is in all its naked glory. Removing the need for QTS leads to this; and I ,for one, am horrified! I feel sorry for the  ‘successful applicant’, I feel sorry for parents but most of all, I feel sorry for the kids and the education system that’s crumbling around them.

Secret Teacher

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31 thoughts on “Anybody can teach!

  1. Why I Am Going On Strike | Secret Teacher February 15, 2014 at 12:45 pm Reply

    […] without qualified teacher status. In fact, some schools only request that their teachers have four GCSEs. His buffoonery knows no […]

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  2. headteacher2014 November 30, 2013 at 8:23 pm Reply

    Reblogged this on headteacher blog and commented:
    This is such a sad development. This just totally undermines the profession in absolutely every possible way. It is heartbreaking to see how education is being fragmented.

    Like

  3. This week … | The News November 30, 2013 at 6:36 pm Reply

    […] symptom of an ongoing plutocratic stranglehold on Britain, which involves keeping the rest of us poorly educated, harrassed in some cases apparently to death, and fully occupied managing our own poverty, against […]

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  4. Chloe November 27, 2013 at 1:43 pm Reply

    My brother is a newly qualified maths teacher. He studied maths at Durham uni, and his masters there too with good results. And then his teacher training at Lancaster. He has been looking for work but everywhere he applies says he’s over qualified. They feel the level of maths he is used to will mean he will get bored after a little while and want to move on. So rather than give him a chance, he’s been turned away. What a fantastic country we live in 😦

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  5. John Smith November 27, 2013 at 1:06 am Reply

    If ‘qualified’ teachers were competent, we wouldn’t have such a massive literacy and numeracy problem.

    Like

  6. Teaching in academies (article) November 26, 2013 at 10:54 pm Reply

    […] Not sure if anyone posted this but was just curious on opinions. Anybody can teach! | Secret Teacher […]

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  7. overhillsandfaraway November 25, 2013 at 10:47 am Reply

    Reblogged this on Over hills and far away….

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  8. Maria November 24, 2013 at 5:28 pm Reply

    Dear Ex South Leeds,
    Regarding your argument that not all qualified surgeons do a good job, I would rather take a chance within a qualified surgeon than regress to the days of blood letting, leeches and having an amputation at the local barbers’ shop.

    Your other argument stating that those with degrees could apply, may be counteracted by the question- what is stopping you from doing a degree?

    Coming from South Leeds myself, it seems that you advocate second best is good enough for students from lower socio-economic groups. Life experience is not a substitute for suitable qualifications. A more enlightened government would seek those with both life experience and qualifications. They would, however, need to be paid accordingly.

    Like

  9. Katherine November 23, 2013 at 5:32 pm Reply

    Reblogged this on How my heart speaks and commented:
    I just can’t believe it!Are we all mad?

    Like

  10. magazine November 23, 2013 at 11:41 am Reply

    “Unqualified Teacher” an oxymoronic state sanctioned by a moron, surely

    Like

  11. marcthomas66 November 23, 2013 at 12:52 am Reply

    Reblogged this on Primary School Confidential! and commented:
    As I am too exasperated to put into words what I think about this, I will let another blogger speak for me.

    Like

  12. Someone who cares November 22, 2013 at 10:57 pm Reply

    It’s not just the qualified teacher status that makes a good teacher that’s just a bit of paper it’s classroom management skills,to deal with poor behaviour and it’s also high expectations of the children who attend this school and the community they come from and the belief that just as any other students around the country these children and this community deserves people to teach them who think they are worthy and this my friends you can’t get a A level or degree in.

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  13. secretteacher6 November 22, 2013 at 10:39 pm Reply

    Ex South Leeds,

    You can’t trot out that old arguement either. How can you say that this job will go to somebody with a wealth of skills and experience? The advertisement sets requirements of four GCSE’s. The pupils they will be teaching will need more than that to enter a Sixth Form College! Also, since when did life experience set somebody up to know how to teach pupils effectively? The thing that is stopping us from applying is the minor fact that we are qualified teachers, and therefore will cost your old academy more money! If these people are so skilled, why would they work for a basic pay when they could complete a teaching degree first? Perhaps the ugly truth here is that they aren’t fit to teach, regardless of how much life experience they have. Give me a young, trained and qualified teacher any day!

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  14. James November 22, 2013 at 9:47 pm Reply

    Would you allow your child to be treated by an unqualified doctor?
    If your car needed new brakes would you let an unqualified mechanic repair your car?
    Your boiler is broken and there is a smell of gas, would you allow an unqualified Gasman repair your boiler?
    Teaching is not just something that a person can do without understanding or knowledge of how a persons mind becomes engaged and challenged. For a person to academically and socially develop a teacher must creatively and engagingly Impart knowledge that is inclusive enough to challenge every child in the class.
    I’m not saying a degree or a qualification is the be all and end all of what makes a teacher, as in my career I have come across less effective practitioners who have the ‘qts’ standard. However, an unqualified teacher will certainly lack the knowledge and understanding of how to creatively plan a sequence of lessons that builds on previous knowledge and develop an enquiring mind. Without this understanding an unqualified teacher misses gaps in learning and builds larger misconceptions. I feel that in teacher training there needs to be more rigour in place to ensure that all children receive a high level of education from effective teachers, but if there are cracks within the profession then allowing anyone to waltz into thr classroom with sound understanding of how to develop a socially and knowledgable person is a bad idea.

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    • Ex south Leeds November 22, 2013 at 10:11 pm Reply

      I think the gaps are allowing people who do not have the traditional requirements a route into teaching. I am not advocating a free for all, nor do I think everyone can teach. What I do believe is that many people have a wealth of skills and experiences that are of more use to the students at South Leeds than those possessed by a graduate fresh out of Uni with little or no life experiences relevant to these kids.

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      • Lecsi Jones November 24, 2013 at 8:58 pm

        Hear hear. Teachers can be trained far better on the job than in politically biased universities. Many teachers come from further education with a vast amount of teaching experience – which qualifes them to teach. Many mangaers have all the qualifications but cannot do the job anymore…..ever wondered why they went into management….. (from an ex teacher fed up of the damage done by the LEFTIES)

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  15. Phil Asquith November 22, 2013 at 9:38 pm Reply

    I love teaching. Won’t be doing it for much longer if this sort of rubbish carries on much longer.

    Like

  16. Ex south Leeds November 22, 2013 at 9:15 pm Reply

    Why do people believe that only “qualified” individuals are capable of teaching? I could tell you about my time teaching at South Leeds Academy, but would it count for anything as I am not qualified in your eyes. Nothing is stopping all you degree holders from applying, is there?

    Like

    • Phil Asquith November 22, 2013 at 9:42 pm Reply

      Please let me know when you need an operation. I mean, why believe only ‘qualified’ surgeons are capable? I love cutting people open. I’m so good at it too. I mean, who needs a qualification right? You won’t believe me of course because I’m not qualified in your eyes.

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      • Ex south Leeds November 22, 2013 at 10:15 pm

        No you cannot trot that old argument out. As you will be aware there are bad surgeons and good surgeons. Just because they are “qualified” it does not mean they will always save your life.

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    • magpie11 November 25, 2013 at 7:45 pm Reply

      Would you let us know exactly what experience it is that qualifies your to teach at this , or any academy?
      I have always said that my real training as a teacher started the first day I went into my first classroom and continued until retirement and beyond……However i did need some background knowledge and understanding of the tradition I was joining. My motto has to be a combination of Roger Ascham’s “Teaching is learning.” and “Learning is Fun”….

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  17. Vonnie November 22, 2013 at 4:58 pm Reply

    Reblogged this on A woman wearing many hats and commented:
    I thought this was really important to share. This doesn’t affect those of us in Scotland as our education system is devolved, but the schooling of our children should never be subject to this kind of politics.

    If this makes you feel any kind of reaction, please do convey it to your MP with haste.

    Like

  18. Christina Coombes November 22, 2013 at 4:51 pm Reply

    Says it all about the state of education in this country. SO glad I left the job and am no longer part of a rapidly degenerating and degrading ‘profession’.

    Like

  19. LG Surgeson November 22, 2013 at 4:29 pm Reply

    Reblogged this on scaling the chalkface and commented:
    So glad I went to university for 6 years to qualify.
    Apparently I needn’t have bothers.

    Like

  20. Neil Campbell November 22, 2013 at 3:41 pm Reply

    Bonkers

    Sent from Windows Mail

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  21. johnclarke1960 November 22, 2013 at 10:17 am Reply

    Reblogged this on johnclarke1960 and commented:
    Goves brave new teaching world.

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  22. johnclarke1960 November 22, 2013 at 10:16 am Reply

    I have tweeted this and face booked it.

    As a Teacher Educator training maths teachers I have watched this slow car crash unfold since 2010. I have written to my Tory MP, Pritti (useless) Patel to be called a Marxist for being critical of her beloved Michael Gove despite streams of evidence. I have had a letter from David Laws being disingenuous about the destruction of teacher training in this country.

    Roll on 2015!

    Like

    • Little Jem of York November 23, 2013 at 6:43 pm Reply

      John – have you thought of publishing those responses? Just so that people know what kind of perfidious crooks are representing them !

      Like

  23. teachingbattleground November 22, 2013 at 5:17 am Reply

    Reblogged this on The Echo Chamber.

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  24. RobotDancing November 21, 2013 at 10:03 pm Reply

    My god this makes me so angry. As a daughter of two teachers, a sister of one, and a niece of several (teaching definitely runs in families!) I find this an insult to anyone who is qualified to teach.

    Like

  25. primaryblogger1 November 21, 2013 at 9:35 pm Reply

    Reblogged this on Primary Blogging.

    Like

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