1 May 2012

MPs make clear important role of universities in training teachers

The university think-tank million+ has welcomed today’s report from the Education Select Committee into teaching training. MPs have backed the strong partnership model that currently exists between universities and schools.

Commenting on Great Teachers: attracting, training and retaining the best, Pam Tatlow, Chief Executive of million+, said: “This report provides a timely reminder of the role of universities in training teachers and should be taken to heart by the Department for Education and Ministers. As MPs have recognised, partnerships between universities and schools are the basis of excellent teacher training. In their evidence to the Committee student teachers made clear that it was important that teacher training also had a theoretical and academic basis and that they highly valued this and the practical support that universities provide. Universities are also involved in providing continuous professional development and the Committee’s proposal that this should be recognised and put on a formal basis is a step in the right direction.

“Education Ministers now need to ensure that they act on these recommendations and re-think plans to transfer initial teacher training from universities to schools which is not supported by this report or by the evidence from schools, universities and student teachers.”

Notes to editors:

  1. million+ is a leading university think-tank, working to solve the complex problems in higher education www.millionplus.ac.uk. For more information please contact Victoria Mills on 0207 717 1659 or 07900 277819.
  2. The Education Committee Ninth Report (HC 1515-I); Great teachers: attracting, training and retaining is available here. The Committee has also cautioned against the simplistic use of degree classification as a way of assessing the merits of primary school trainees and eligibility for bursaries. Other proposals include establishing a College of Teaching and a central portal for applications. Both are interesting and would need further investigation and discussion. The evidence submitted by million+ to the Committee Inquiry can be found here.