Misunderstanding of the masters

15th January 2010 at 00:00

Your article "Unions slam move to allow unqualified mentors to supervise masters degree" (January 8) proceeds from a mistaken premise. Many coaches for the Masters in Teaching and Learning (MTL) will already have a masters-level qualification, and all will be highly experienced teachers with much to offer. Initially, teachers who are also induction tutors will be used, so they have especially relevant experience for the new teachers who will be undertaking MTL.

The article also ignores the role of the higher education institution tutor, who has the lead responsibility for the masters-level element of participants' work. The in-school coach's main role is to ensure participants' MTL work has a positive impact on their teaching and pupils' learning.

The NUT seems to misunderstand the coach's role: to help participants to hone their teaching skills in the classroom, not to write theses in dark corners.

In time, the number of coaches with the MTL will grow as the qualification becomes embedded. We are building the cadre, but transformation like this does not happen overnight. The MTL is a 10-year vision.

Graham Holley, Chief Executive, Training and Development Agency for Schools, London.

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