Master Teacher Standards - press release
21 October 2011.
Commenting on the review of teacher standards, Christine Blower, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers’ union said:
"Much of the content of the new "Master Teacher" standards successfully captures the practices and behaviours of a highly experienced and effective teacher. The standards’ focus on the teaching and learning process in the classroom and their encouragement of the use of professional judgement and expertise are particularly welcome.
"It is unclear, however, how the "Master Teacher" standards will be used in practice. There is no indication of whether they are intended to be a direct replacement for the current post-threshold, Advanced Skills and/or Excellent Teacher standards or if the Government intends something else to take the place of these or wishes to abolish some or all of these pay grades and posts.
"There is also concern about how teachers would be assessed consistently against the standards, as some elements of them are subjective and not easily quantifiable.
"The Government’s concept of the "Master Teacher" seems in many ways to be reminiscent of a "Goodbye Mr Chips"- style figure. Standards which require teachers to establish "a stimulating culture of scholarship" seem to come from a nostalgia for a bygone age rather than reflect the vibrant and diverse classrooms of the 21st century. Equally anachronistic is the title of "Master Teacher". Given that the majority of the profession is female, it would have been more appropriate for the Government to have come up with a less gender-specific designation".