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ERIC Number: EJ1004623
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0030-9230
"Willing Enthusiasts" or "Lame Ducks"? Issues in Teacher Professional Development Policy in England and Wales 1910-1975
Robinson, Wendy; Bryce, Marie
Paedagogica Historica: International Journal of the History of Education, v49 n3 p345-360 2013
Though there is a well-established body of research in the field of teacher professional development, it is characterised by a real dearth of any detailed historical analysis. This paper seeks to address this gap, by offering a new historical analysis of a case study of the evolution of organised teacher professional development in England and Wales during the twentieth century. Its approach is hoped to open up the wider debate and to contribute to a fuller understanding of the basis for those questions and dilemmas about teacher professional development that have long exercised teachers, professional educators and policy-makers--questions which turn on fundamental issues of priorities and purpose, funding, scale of teacher engagement, control and reach. The paper is in three main parts. Firstly, the scope of the case study is outlined with key stages in the evolution of teacher professional development in England and Wales identified. Secondly, four themes from the data which characterised this evolution are discussed. These include the restricted engagement of teachers relative to the whole teacher population; limited funding; the highly centralised control over provision for teacher professional development through Her Majesty's Inspectorate (HMI); and a highly selective and restrictive access to provision by teachers. It is argued that these key characteristics helped to shape a particular culture and ideology of teacher professional development which was dependent on a select cadre of elite teachers for the dissemination and modelling of what was regarded as good practice, so as to improve their colleagues' performance--the elite excelled while the majority needed to be saved from mediocrity. The particular ideology underlying this model is conceptualised as one of "excellence and salvation". Finally, it is argued that the key issues identified in this story (the restricted engagement of teachers; limited funding; highly centralised control; and ideologies of excellence) raise important generic questions for the field of teacher professional development more widely as well as framing future historical analysis of teacher professional development. (Contains 51 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England); United Kingdom (Wales)