New guidelines mock McCrone agreement

9th October 2009 at 01:00

I am very concerned that a small group of so-called representatives appears to be responsible for driving through the new guidelines for chartered teachers, which were released last week. Despite contrary claims, they will be used to pressure CTs into accepting other responsibilities they did not sign up to when undertaking their studies.

It is alarming that CTs were not surveyed regarding this matter, which seems to have been dealt with behind closed doors and sneaked in through the back door. It shows a deceitful and high-handed disrespect and disregard for the spirit of the McCrone agreement.

After McCrone, it was agreed that experienced teachers who did not want to go into management should be encouraged to improve their classroom practice in order to become even more valued professionals. These two areas were not to overlap. McCrone was the most comprehensive study of the Scottish education system to date, and it now looks as though it is going to be entirely ignored by a minority of self-important politicians.

I am very disappointed that such an excellent avenue of professional development is being tainted with unnecessary managerial baggage. Wouldn't it be a much better idea to insist that our managers and leaders be trained to some kind of professional standard before they are promoted? That way, we wouldn't need to try and off-load responsibilities in this kind of underhand manner.

There is now too much of a buffer between what is actually happening in classrooms and the giddy upper echelons of management. There have been some advances regarding headship, but not for other levels of management.

CT status is an excellent idea which seems about to be sacrificed to cover up the glaring flaws and failings of the hierarchical system in schools.

Leadership for Excellence? I don't think so, especially if this "brainchild" becomes policy - and the guidelines will be insisted on as being policy, make no mistake. Such is the calibre of our leadership in these times.

Chartered teacher, Fife.

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