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Faculty of Education The status of teachers and how might we measure it? Linda Hargreaves & Julia Flutter Faculty of Education.

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Presentation on theme: "Faculty of Education The status of teachers and how might we measure it? Linda Hargreaves & Julia Flutter Faculty of Education."— Presentation transcript:

1 Faculty of Education The status of teachers and how might we measure it? Linda Hargreaves & Julia Flutter Faculty of Education

2 Status … A struggle … Loss of status excites the brain more than losing money Alain de Botton equates it with wanting to be loved ‘ sto stare …. Latin for standing in society More than simple economic wealth – also determined by cultural and life style choices The right to the privileges and responsibilities of citizenship – the ‘socio- legal entitlements of the individual’ (Turner, 1988)

3 Faculty of Education Perceptions of teacher status over the years in England (2006) - teachers’ pessimism

4 Faculty of Education Occupational status of teachers Three components (Hoyle, 2001) Occupational prestige public perception of the rank of teaching in a hierarchy of occupations Occupational status Is teaching a profession or not according to ‘knowledgeable others’? Occupational esteem Public regard for teachers’ care, commitment, competence In everyday terms, status of teachers usually means occupational prestige

5 Faculty of Education Number of children  Number of teachers  Limited budget  Low pay Children as clients Relationship with pupils  Intermediate world between childhood and adulthood  Pupils might get out of control Ambiguities in education  Diffuse roles  diversity of outcomes Supply of people? women: unqualified/less qualified people Occupational PRESTIGE of teaching All cells impinge on the image of teaching What exactly is the teacher’s knowledge and expertise? The occupational prestige of teaching (simplifed adaptation from Hoyle, 2001)

6 Faculty of Education Contemporary factors likely to affect teacher status Economic downturn – job satisfaction and pay USA (2012 Metlife survey) job satisfaction at lowest ebb for 20 years 75% say schools have faced budget cuts 67% say schools faced teacher redundancies 60% report increased class sizes Similar story in Europe : Cuts in Spain, Greece, Italy, Portugal ‘Status panic’ in France But salaries have risen in Czechia, Poland, Slovakia, Iceland

7 Faculty of Education More changes likely to influence status Prescriptive teaching methods (teachers as generalists) Emphasis on accountability through tests, inspections, league tables Rise of private tutoring Teacher mobility and migration – an increasing phenomenon Feminisation of the profession negative correlation between salaries : GDP and % women to all primary teachers but not in Central Africa – UNESCO 2010 Influence of the media? Teacher voice

8 Faculty of Education 12 case countries in the report

9 Faculty of Education A range of states of teacher status New Zealand – status depends on ‘fame, fortune and power’ Ghana – low pay, low living standards, but considerable investment in engaging young people in teaching Finland – teaching considered top career over other professions; highly competitive; women enjoy high status in Finland India – rapid decline in teacher status when state education introduced. Role diffusion a problem – e.g. teachers to promote family planning Egypt – teachers despised; very poorly paid; private tutoring seriously undermines status Spain – primary teachers enjoy higher status than their secondary counterparts

10 Faculty of Education Public perceptions of teacher attributes in Spain

11 Faculty of Education The media effect …but in England, press reporting has changed since the 1990s ‘I think.. teachers get a better press than they think they do. I think they get more exposure than many other public servants, for good reason, but I think that the cliché that the media represents teachers in a bad light.. is a bit anachronistic now’ (Education Correspondent - ‘Quality’ daily paper) Changes in news reporting since 1990s (Hansen, 2009) Grammatical change (from objects to subjects) Lexical change (from confrontational to promotional language) ‘Teacher’ now carries powerful positive connotations Education news now prominent and high status Only other profession close to ‘teacher’ in headlines was ‘doctor’

12 Faculty of Education How can we assess teacher status? Several contextual layers to take into account National characteristics of education Establishment? Stability? universal primary education? Unions - how well placed to assess teacher status? Possibility of two questionnaires according to state of education Use of McArthur ten rung ladder as ‘litmus test’ ? Use of comparative ratings Perceptions of change in teacher status over time Relative status of kindergarten, primary and secondary teachers

13 Faculty of Education Society Education system Teaching force Regional/Local Own School History, economic stability Demand, supply, source of teachers Pay and conditions Longevity Stablity Complexity (public/private) Recruitment –entry qualifications Retention Initial training and CPD Cooperation or competition Links with local schools Relationships with community Internal relations Leadership style – democratic? Sense of trust and responsibility Resources and facilities Conceptual framework: from distal to proximal contexts CONTEXTUAL LAYER ISSUES RELEVANT TO STATUS

14 Faculty of Education High Status Occupation High Status Occupation High Status Occupation Low Status Occupation Low Status Occupation Low Status Occupation Local Regional National Look at this ladder. If a very high status occupation was on the top rung, and a very low status occupation on the bottom rung, which rung would teaching sit on in your local area / region / national context?

15 Faculty of Education Example of comparative ratings to define high status

16 Faculty of Education Defining‘a high status profession’and the teaching profession in England (2006)

17 Faculty of Education Perceptions of change in teacher status over time Years could be significant event (change of government, major educational reform) or just equal intervals as shown

18 Faculty of Education Perceptions of teacher status over the years in England (2006) (critical dates)

19 Faculty of Education Main Topics to be considered National level Demand and supply of teachers - mobility and migration Entry qualifications and competition Respect for education A voice for teachers? Public and private sectors? Education system Trust and autonomy Control of entry to profession Recognition of advanced teaching skills Pay and conditions? Recruitment and retention Initial and continuing professional development Trust and autonomy Recognition of advanced teaching skills, as defined by teachers Consultation on key issues Barriers to status Improvements to teacher status UNESCO 2012 recommends monitoring of Teacher shortage Teacher quality Research knowledge production and communication Recommendations from major reports

20 Faculty of Education Topics at each layer for consideration Regional/local level School cooperation or competition Provision of local training for teachers Relationships with community Opportunities for research School Leadership style Trust and responsibility Internal relations Individual teacher Self efficacy, commitment, motivation

21 Faculty of Education Item suggestions from New Zealand (Hall & Langdon, 2006)

22 Faculty of Education Concluding comments Hoyle’s determinants of teacher status remain valid over time and place although they vary in impact from place to place The achievement of universal primary education should raise not lower teacher status, if teachers are trained Training and professional development, and greater competition to train as a teacher, will promote teacher status Being involved in research is now perceived (in England) as status raising Teachers need a voice to reveal their professionalism as well as basic needs to make the public more aware of their responsibilities and expertise

23 Faculty of Education Teacher organisations are uniquely well placed, being in touch authentically with individual teachers and with government ministers to promote teacher voice to collaborate with governments on reforms to increase public awareness of teachers’ work and expertise to make this first step in consulting on the determinants of teacher status, how they may vary with national and local conditions and to bring them to the fore

24 Faculty of Education Thank you! Merci bien!


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