Pupils aren't like robots

20th January 2012 at 00:00

Michael Gove's baseline for judging teachers is that all pupils should show improvement each and every term. It's difficult to construct an argument against this without appearing to support poor standards. Yet, as any teacher will tell you, children are not smooth-running machines. Their development and improvement is subject to so many variables that to judge purely on absolute progress term by term will result in no teacher ever being judged "good" or "outstanding". Given that the phenomenon of pupil regression as they move from primary to secondary is well documented, does Mr Gove suggest that all Year 7 teachers should be placed on competency or capability proceedings if pupils do not improve during their first term in secondary school?

James D. Williams, Lead science tutor and lecturer in science education at the University of Sussex's School of Education and Social Work.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now