I often hear this said; let teachers get on and do their job.
Whilst I agree in many senses from the perspective of a teacher, from the perspective of school leaders I’m not so sure.
Do teachers actually know how to ‘get on with it’?
It’s un-pc on forums and social media to even suggest it. It’s rarely discussed, almost taboo but there are teachers for whom letting them ‘get on with it’ might not be a good idea.
I ‘ummmed’ and ‘ahhhed’ about writing this blog and then someone on my Twitter feed retweeted this blog post about giving staff a loyalty card to track their CPD. It convinced me that this needs to be discussed amongst leaders.
Is it possible to leave teachers alone to do their own thing and just “trust teachers to get on with it”?
I think the very fact that this system has been established is because there are teachers that don’t engage pro-actively in their own CPD. They don’t take responsibility for improving teaching through appropriate professional development, they need to be cajoled or rewarded.
There are also teachers who don’t know how to speak to children, who don’t know how to foster and maintain pupils’ interest in the subject, don’t know how to clear rules and routines for behaviour in classrooms, don’t know how to impart knowledge and develop understanding through effective use of lesson time. I could go on.
However it is clearly listed in the Teacher Standards that teachers should be doing these things as a minimum.
In recent years the carrot and the stick has become pay; if you do your job you can progress on the pay scale. Doesn’t this in itself support the view that there are teachers who cannot ‘just get on with it’?
I’m not sure how to finish this blog post. Let me be clear I’m not criticising the blogger’s school decision; it highlights exactly the issue that leaders have. I think that I’m trying to say that letting teachers get on with it can be both dangerous and limiting;dangerous if a teacher isn’t doing the minimum and limiting if teachers don’t see development as key to their job.