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changes to QTS skills tests

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by rsbooboo, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. Calling all student teachers! If you feel the new changes are unfair email Gove and your local MPs to express your opinion.

    Im in the 2nd year of a 4 year course and while I agree I probably shouldnt be teaching if I cant pass the tests I feel it is not right that I am not getting the same chance to pass as everyone who has gone before me. I obviously have maths and English GCSE so basing 4 years of hard work on whether I can hold my nerve during 3 chances to pass the 2 tests seems ridiculous I have met outstanding teachers who admit they took 5 + times to pass so it is not about ability to teach. I could get to the end of 4 years, up to my neck in debt, only to fail and then have to wait another 2 years to try again.
     
  2. Calling all student teachers! If you feel the new changes are unfair email Gove and your local MPs to express your opinion.

    Im in the 2nd year of a 4 year course and while I agree I probably shouldnt be teaching if I cant pass the tests I feel it is not right that I am not getting the same chance to pass as everyone who has gone before me. I obviously have maths and English GCSE so basing 4 years of hard work on whether I can hold my nerve during 3 chances to pass the 2 tests seems ridiculous I have met outstanding teachers who admit they took 5 + times to pass so it is not about ability to teach. I could get to the end of 4 years, up to my neck in debt, only to fail and then have to wait another 2 years to try again.
     
  3. Personally, if a teacher fails them twice then I would argue that they are not fit )academically with regards their own literacy and numeracy skills) yet.
    And actually agree with this move.
    How can someone suggest that they are knoweldgeable of curriculum etc without having these basic skills in their repertoire?
     
  4. Captain Obvious

    Captain Obvious New commenter

    They're basic maths and literacy tests. They may be a case of jumping through hoops, but they're not exactly hard.
    As long as you can spell and parse a sentence, you pass the literacy test.
    As long as you can do basic maths/budgeting and percentages, you pass the numeracy test.
    Sure, people get nervous, but by the age of coming a student teacher you should have been nervous about tests a few times before that point and worked out how to deal with it.
    It may seem cold (and yes, I had to do them), but since you got your GCSE English and Maths to get on the course preparing for, and doing, these two tests shouldn't be too challenging.
     
  5. It scares me that there are those that seem to think that these tests are pointless!
     
  6. I didnt say they were pointless Im just not sure how fair it is that previous teachers got as many tries as they wanted, and many of them needed them, and yet we dont. I have no intention of failing them but is it right to move the goal posts after we have already started the course. If I had sat them before hand that would have been ok, but we are stuck in the middle somewhere, we have already committed to 4 years of training and some people may fail through nerves and pressure. Is this fair? are we saying that a persons inability to stay calm during an online test reflects their ability to teach? Its not the tests I have an issue with, rather the change in rules for those already on the course.
     
  7. So does that include already qualified teachers that took more than 3 times to pass them?? are you suggesting that our schools are full of incompetent teachers based on how many times it took to pass the tests??
     
  8. Captain Obvious

    Captain Obvious New commenter

    Then they need to do something about it. There are all sorts of techniques to manage stress - they need to learn them. To expect the system to change because a small minority are unable to control their emotions is unrealistic.
    It's one small portion of the course which you were already required to do. If a person can't pass a literacy or numeracy test after 3 attempts due to "stress" they're fooling themselves that it's the system that's at fault.
     
  9. Totally agree.
    If set on teaching then perhaps enrolling on literacy/numeracy course as appropriate would be the best course of action, to actually gain the skils necessary to be a teacher with appropriate skill set.
     

  10. I know its just a small part and that they shouldnt be difficult, Im pretty sure if the rules had changed during your training you would have kicked off. What is it about the 'Im alright Jack' attitude of todays society? Perhaps we should sack every outstanding teacher that took more than 3 attempts to pass the tests because by your standards they shouldnt be teachers!
    I think Im just being realistic, im on a work based course, studying for 4 years while working in school and dragging my family up! Like I said before I havent got a problem with the tests and I WILL pass them! but there may be people on my course that dont. Why is it right that previous students had ample chances to take them? future students wont get on the course if they dont pass them (thats fine) and so wont rack up loads of debt. I suppose what Im saying is, wouldnt it have been fairer to phase out the old system for those already on ITT courses?
     
  11. Or make it a module on the course so they dont just take our money and leave us high and dry. Im assuming that the GCSEs, A levels, placements and degree to get to that point count for nothing than?? Its all about 2 poxy tests, thats what makes a good teacher??
     
  12. Captain Obvious

    Captain Obvious New commenter

    Not really. My numeracy and literacy are both excellent, and I passed both first time around (In fact I would have welcomed the change since they dumped the stupid ICT test).
    Your point is irrelevant. Testing regimes change all the time - driving tests being another classic example. It's not feasible to retest everyone that has been certified by a previous system. It falls to the performance management system to ensure that teachers are meeting the core standards (which coincidentally includes literacy and numeracy).
    Which is why I started talking in general terms and never used "You".
    Doubtful. Having to maintain two different testing regimes for up to three years would have been costly, for a start. The same content is being assessed, so all you're looking at is trying to pass in fewer attempts.
    Which is usually achieved by studying if a person is either good at the topic or makes sure they revise for it. The "It's not fair" defence doesn't really work.


     
  13. PaulDG

    PaulDG Occasional commenter

    No.
    But amongst the things that characterise a poor teacher is "not passing the kinds of test any normal 14 year old should sail through".
    So, while it's entirely possible (in fact quite easy) to be a poor teacher who has passed the tests, the number of good teachers who cannot pass them can be counted on the fingers of one foot.
    They really are very simple. The fact that so many failed them in the past says an awful lot about the sort of people who think you become a teacher because you "really really want to be one".
    Sorry, "really really wanting..." isn't enough. (Actually I'm not in the least bit sorry.. The tests are so easy, the fact that any graduate fails them is a pretty damming indicator of the state of higher education.)
     
  14. TBH, if someone decdies to train to be a teacher and isn't up to the job, then this is a way of sifting the wheat for the chaff. No different to any other professional qualification.
    I think that given the number of erros in two paragraphs above, highlights the need really to move to a one attempt system at the tests myself for trainee teachers.
    With regards preivous rules about the number of attempts. I think that the time lapse of two years is more than appropriate and too long in coming.
     
  15. OH YAWN!!! I thought staff rooms were bitchy! Ha! didnt realise I was sitting a test now! Oh I also put 'than' instead of 'then' are you going to give me a detention!!!
     
  16. That may well be true but the chaff already doing the course will have spent £20,000 in order to find that out....oh and its sort the wheat FROM the chaff!! :)
     
  17. I agree with what you are saying but for anyone already on the course they will have spent £20.000 + to find out they shouldnt be a teacher!!! Thats what I have a problem with. New students who fail the pre entry tests wont have that burden.
     
  18. As is the case for many other professions, that fail to make the grade that far along the line. e.g. doctors, lawyers etc. Certainly, before QTS tests and the creation of the hundreds of differen ways to attain QTS, trainee teachers didn't make the grade then too, but not through having a lack of basic literacy and numeracy skills. So as far as I can see there really is no change.
    Heaven forbid, if teaching ever became a Masters level profession if so many teachers are struggling with Level 2 tests.
     
  19. Well thats me told then!!! haha! and well done you for you excellent numeracy and literacy skills, Im sure your mother is very proud! :)
     
  20. I didnt suggest 'so many' teachers are struggling and there is a difference between this course and training to be a doctor for example, i know as my son is in his 3rd year of a medical degree, he will either pass his degree or he wont, he wont pass his degree only to fail to become a doctor by failing two tests after the fact.
     

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