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Exclusive: 'First knowledge-based PGCE' will be discontinued

Discussion in 'Education news' started by Scintillant, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    Vince_Ulam likes this.
  2. fineliner

    fineliner Occasional commenter

    I wonder what 'strategic reasons' is a euphemism for?
    slingshotsally and Scintillant like this.
  3. MrMedia

    MrMedia Star commenter

    I'm just writing a long article on some of this. The knowledge based stuff is, simply put - monetisable. You can deliver this with blended learning and assess it online. It requires far fewer qualified teachers. It takes all learning for a subject and then strips it down to the bare minimum. No loco parentis requirements. No need for life long learning or any other requirement to prepare children for life. If you have to teach them what is required for the new GCSEs which are inherently knowledge based since Gove redrew them - what exactly do they need to know?

    Facts - probably at least 40% of the GCSE paper. These can be taught by software and assessed.
    Other stuff - 60% of the GCSE paper. That's it. Nothing else. No love for the subject, nothing.

    Now approach that as a venture capitalist. You sponsor a big chain like Ark and now you can invest in a company selling them software replacing 40% of the spend on teachers. That's a lot of money.

    Now go about training teachers to teach in that system. The problems immediately become apparent don't they? They go against what a PGCE actually asks teachers to do - reflect critically on the notions of education.
  4. fineliner

    fineliner Occasional commenter

    I hope that you will be sharing this article with us before long. Will it be a TES piece?
    slingshotsally likes this.
  5. MrMedia

    MrMedia Star commenter

    Alas no, it’s an academic publication. Sorry TES!
  6. chelsea2

    chelsea2 Star commenter

    Its programme director Mr Peal is a history teacher at the West London Free School who was seconded to the Department for Education in 2015-16 to support schools minister Nick Gibb with policy advice and speechwriting.

    Hmmm - says it all!
  7. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Lead commenter

    Aren't all PGCE courses knowledge based? Just this one was skipping over the professional knowledge.

    Perhaps by running the course they realised you don't actually need teachers to teach students to remember facts and apply methods without needing to worry about being able to sythesise it.
    Scintillant likes this.
  8. theworm123

    theworm123 Lead commenter

    Will it be in a journal/conference paper? I’d be interested in reading it I have a minor research interest in Computer Science pedagogy.
  9. MrMedia

    MrMedia Star commenter

    Yes, it will be behind a paywall - however, it is not looking at computer science to be fair, it is more about the role of technology in this country and how it is being used. If you are a big business then your focus is on cost, margins and delivering a clearly defined product. If you are a teacher then you are trying to deliver as much learning as possible within the same provision. The big business sees replacing you with technology as a much more efficient model - no nasty ethics about wanting to do as much as you can for the pupil or anything like that. Testable knowledge - as much as possible, taught and tested by AI. That's what Tim Oates said the new curriculum was about and why the exam boards have rewritten all the GCSEs like they are. It's all about delivering this KIPP programme at minimum cost. Ark Academies is looking at a 40% reduction in teacher provision for this model.

    Take computer science. Why do we need physical teachers? Why don't I just write some gaming style software and also set up some very precise knowledge and tests for it all? Put a TA in the room for health and safety and job done.

    As teachers, we bring trust and relationships to learning and this adds much more value than you think. Business research has found that this style of management is far more successful in performance gain, retention, learning progress and so forth than systems that don't use trust and relationships. Martin Lewis has been asking the question about self-checkouts. They are cheaper, but many people want human staffed checkouts.

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