General Teaching Council for Scotland: Consultation on Guidelines for Initial Teacher Education Programmes in Scotland, and Memorandum on Entry Requirements to Programmes of Initial Teacher Education in Scotland
Memorandum on Entry Requirements to Courses of Initial Teacher Education
- As indicated at the informal consultation stage, it is our organisation’s view that Maths at level 6 would be an ideal entry requirement.
- We are pleased to note that English at level 6 is to be maintained as an entrance level requirement.
- We are also pleased to note that a higher level or equivalent languages qualification will be a requirement for primary teaching. However, situations can arise where the language in which the teacher is qualified is not the language taught in their particular establishment. Courses need to target key language teaching strategies that can be applied to teaching different languages.
- It is noted from section 4 paragraph (iii) that science is included here amongst other subjects such as social studies and expressive arts, with no level requirement specified. Given the importance of science at primary school, it remains our organisation’s view that science studied to at least level 5 would be ideal.
- Language within the document should be unequivocal. For example, at page 5, section “PGDE (Secondary) Programmes, bullet point 1, line 2 it states “The degree should normally contain…”. It would be helpful if this section could state the circumstances in which 80 SCQF credit points relevant to the teaching qualification(s) would not be required, to ensure that this is not too widely interpreted.
- It is noted that, where an individual wishes to teach two foreign languages, they must demonstrate that they have lived for six months in country 1 and at least three months in country 2. Whilst it is a minor point, it would be helpful to have clarification of the requirement in cases where an individual wishing to teach two languages, say German and Italian, has lived abroad in a region of one country which uses both languages; would 6 months living abroad in this region suffice for teaching both languages, or would 9 months be required?
Guidelines for Courses of Initial Teacher Education in Scotland
- We are pleased to note reference to partnership working in paragraph 1.3 to ensure that consistency in the experiences of students. Mentoring training would also be helpful for staff.
- As advised in our informal consultation response, there is concern that many primary teaching students decide late in their course that teaching is not for them. More experience of schools at an early stage is required to make sure that they have made the right choice.
- It is our organisation’s view that the teaching of reading should be a priority for all primary teachers, with time provided to learn about different teaching methods.
The GTCS Consultation:
Following an informal consultation on the Guidelines for Initial Teacher Education Programmes in Scotland and the Memorandum on Entry Requirements to Programmes of Initial Teacher Education in Scotland, work was carried out on redrafting these two documents in the light of what was said during the informal consultation.
Comments were sought on the redrafted versions below:
To assist, GTCS included commentary documents which outline the changes proposed in both documents:
No formal response document was issued and comments were invited from all interested parties with submissions preferred via email.
The deadline for comments was Friday 17 May 2013.
Senior Professional Officer (Scotland)