Agony Uncle answers your questions
I am not keen on the teacher-training course that I am compelled to do. Why should I take it seriously when I am not taken seriously as a lecturer? My qualification, when I finally get it, will give me equal status to teachers in schools but not equal pay or respect.
You have to separate a great opportunity to develop your skills from your feelings about pay. Pay parity will eventually come, but FE is still remembered for being a place run by amateurs for amateurs. The revolution that has gone on in FE must be validated with re-branding and the further blurring of boundaries between sectors. Your qualification will give you licence to be a complete part of that new beginning. My only concern is that a recent Ofsted report masks half-heartedness within the sector towards initial teacher training, a position made worse by recent reports of plagiarism among staff. If FE wants to be taken seriously, that training must be taken seriously, despite the difficulties in retraining a sector already at work.
Dilemmas should be sent to Donald Short: email: email@example.com