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UCU responds to government's teacher training shake-up

8 November 2011

UCU said today that government plans to shake up teacher training risked decimating the professionalism of teaching.

The union was responding to plans from education secretary Michael Gove that will significantly reduce the amount of time trainee teachers spend at university learning their skills.
In 2009-10 OFSTED rated half of teacher training (47%) in higher education institutions as outstanding, compared to just a quarter (26%) that was school-based. UCU said the government wanted to introduce ideological policies in areas that simply did not justify such radical change.
UCU general secretary, Sally Hunt, said: 'Partnerships between schools and universities produce the best results when it comes to training our teachers and we fail to see why we should give that up. Teacher training is not simply an apprenticeship, but teaches trainees to reflect critically on the impact of their teaching.
'Staff in teacher training departments in colleges and universities have a breadth of expertise and experience which would be lost in this crazy reform along with hundreds of jobs. We risk decimating the professionalism of teaching if ministers pursue a policy on ideological grounds, rather than studying the evidence.'
Last updated: 11 December 2015