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Has anyone seen anything of the £80 million?

Discussion in 'Computing and ICT' started by binaryhex, Mar 6, 2019.

  1. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    There is a huge leap from going on a few away day courses as an a ICT teacher wanting to teach CS to studying CS full time over three or four years followed by a few years writing software for a living. Moscowbore is correct. Some might be able to make the grade if they give up every waking hour and socialising to keep learning, but the vast majority will only ever be able to teach the A Levels by teaching by rote, by numbers, by using day course materials without having any real insight or understanding I fear. Fortunately, YouTube is there for the aspiring self-learners.
  2. Penny10p

    Penny10p Occasional commenter

    I am certainly not disputing that the situation I am in is far from ideal.
  3. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    Indeed it’s not.

    Organisations like the BCS, the NCCE, CAS etc are really driving the subject into the dirt. These so-called ‘by teachers for teachers” organisations, “driving computer education forward” clubs, and the “21st century education” nonsense they come out with, are destroying the subject in schools; they keep putting their committees and advisory bodies together without a mixed ability state school teacher anywhere to be seen. They are nearly exclusively made up of exactly the same non-state school people in each organisation, professors, lecturers looking to add to their CV, Google and Microsoft employees looking to sell products by the back door, grammar and independent teachers and Heads, often appointed by politicians to “advise” and rubber stamp. The churning of these same people in these different organisations tells everyone all they need to know, and is the reason there is little change, few new ideas and why the same bad ones are trotted out at the same time by these allegedly free spirited, deep thinking, movers and shakers.
  4. ronnieg

    ronnieg New commenter

    Company I work for are running some of the courses - started with the Primary ones and we will be starting the secondary ones shortly.
  5. dalersmith

    dalersmith Occasional commenter

    Why are they a joke? The bursary covered more than the cost of cover for the courses that I did, they are taught by teachers or ex teachers not academics. For the people that need up-skilling they are exactly what is needed. As for the ideas that you need a degree in CS to teach A level well, I know of a few teachers where there first degree is not Computer Science, but have more than enough programming skills from C++ and the such from Physics degrees that they teach CS well and effectively. With their students performing very well in exams. More to the point if you have a Computing Degree why do you need a course?
    ronnieg likes this.
  6. dalersmith

    dalersmith Occasional commenter

    You talk about elitism, yet you and a few other posters continually talk about people that shouldn't be allowed to teach computer science, or students that shouldn't be allowed to study it because they are not good enough. Talk about elitism
  7. ronnieg

    ronnieg New commenter

    Agree with every comment.As I stated before the company I work for is delivering some of these courses - we are all fully qualified teachers who teach comluting day in day out. Not all have degrees in computing but we teach and advise on every aspect of computing. I personally have qualifications in computing up to and including degree level and also have 25 years of teaching and co-ordinating the subject. Ncce courses have been designed by people with plenty of experience in the field. Feedback has been very positive so far - something has to be done to get teachers to embrace technology- hopefully this will help
  8. moscowbore

    moscowbore Star commenter

    Apply this mindset to any other subject and it quickly becomes ridiculous.

    Would it be ok to send a CS teacher on a few Mandarin courses and expect them to teach A level Mandarin? No, of course not.

    I have witnessed unqualified people teach CS very badly. I observed schools only recruiting the cheapest possible body to teach CS.
    As for getting teachers to embrace technology, this is insulting to all teachers.
    Why not recruit CS graduates and teach them how to teach? I too have seen CS taught by non-CS graduates and a few do a grand job. But only the few who have enough CS experience to have built up enough subject knowledge. The subject knowledge is the basis of good teaching. You need the sound subject knowledge to be able to react to what happens in class and try another approach. Poor subject knowledge leads to undifferentiated flat lessons, in my experience.
  9. dalersmith

    dalersmith Occasional commenter

    Likewise I have seen highly qualified teachers of CS and other subjects teach incredibly badly. Skill at teaching any subject is not fully and wholly reliant on having a good degree, it helps but is not the be all and end all. Strong subject knowledge is built on the willingness and determination to learn and do the job and do it well. Some ex ICT teachers have fully embraced this, many others have not. The elitism of you cannot teach CS without a degree is wrong, teachers from ICT that are willing to move to CS should be supported with appropriate CPD agreed, whether that is a subject enhancement course(these are available for all subjects) or some other form of accelerated learning program I don't care. What I want is someone who wants to teach my subject, and willing to learn how to do it well, at which point I will support them fully.
    ronnieg likes this.
  10. moscowbore

    moscowbore Star commenter

    Yes, you will support them fully and in a few years they might be able to teach it. What about the students they teach while they are learning to teach CS?
  11. dalersmith

    dalersmith Occasional commenter

    They get the same support as any other student that is struggling. We all know there are students that will struggle regardless of how good the teachers are, and to be honest if they(teachers ) and their students are struggling after more than a year I would want to know why. After all a post graduate degree in CS would only take a year, would I release a new teacher directly on to A level or even GCSE, no, not without support. However, many teachers will come from teaching backgrounds, so would have sound pedagogical knowledge hopefully, they only have to acquire the new knowledge, which to be honest should not take more than a year max.
  12. ronnieg

    ronnieg New commenter

    Why is it insulting to teachers that they will hopefully embrace technology? Heard it in many schools that they don't feel confident. The courses we run have been aimed primarily at co-ordinators and Cs teachers at secondary.
  13. ronnieg

    ronnieg New commenter

    Also going by your statement the majority of primary school teachers aren't good teachers bearing in mind they teach 10+ subjects and can't be qualified in all of them. This is an insult to primary teachers.
  14. moscowbore

    moscowbore Star commenter

    There seems to be some fundamental disagreements here.
    I do not believe that you can learn programming in a year. You can learn some syntax in a year.

    I believe that to teach something you to have more knowledge and understanding than your students. That allows the teacher to try different approaches if one does not not work.

    I do not believe that a CS degree is necessary to teach CS. I do believe that a deep subject knowledge is required whether it comes from a degree or not. You do not acquire deep subject knowledge in a year.

    I do believe that you can take someone with a deep subject knowledge and teach them how to teach. That goes for any subject. I do not believe that anyone can acquire a deep subject knowledge and learn how to teach it in a year. No subject other than CS would propose such a thing.

    I am all for upskilling ICT teachers. No worthwhile training has appeared yet and I honestly hope that changes.
  15. ronnieg

    ronnieg New commenter

    Some of the most intelligent people I've met have been terrible teachers - they may have the knowledge but they can't impart it to others.
  16. 3monkey

    3monkey New commenter

    This training - I thought it had all been forgotten about.

    Sadly for our department, it is now all too late! All of us computer teachers plus a technician were issued with 'At risk' notices on Friday. I suspect I'll be gone by the Summer.

    The reasons the Head gave were that numbers opting to take the subject had fallen for the third year in a row (often seen rightly or wrongly by many pupils as the hardest GCSE and A Level subject after chemistry), we have tried but failed to recruit suitably qualified (i.e. cheap) computer teachers, that we have done our best to save the department but nothing has worked, and we also suspect that the cost of having a much reduced in size computer department will save the school a serious lot of cash. Sadly, I sort or agree with everything the Head said. I like the school but teaching computing to mixed ability pupils in large classes was draining me and the specifications were so hard to get through in the time.

    I guess this is the push I need to start applying for jobs abroad. 2.1 CS degree, three years software experience, three years teaching, happy chappy, easy to get on with wants job in maybe Singapore, China, Thailand ......
  17. Penny10p

    Penny10p Occasional commenter

    I suggest you look at the UAE, specifically Abu Dhabi and Dubai. There are always adverts for CS teachers on TES (however I haven’t looked recently). The visa rules mean that teachers like me who don’t have a CS degree cannot teach there, but you sound like just the sort they want! CS teachers are also in demand in Thailand. Have a look at overseas positions on TES jobs. I have yet to meeet anyone who has made the move to overseas teaching and regretted it.
  18. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    I’m sure someone will pop along here soon and give you their sympathies, tell you that they are in an organisation on the case setting up ‘training hubs’ and should be ready to save the subject in three or four years time, subject to the Government giving them another £80 million for a few more bonuses. Sadly, Those saying they are ‘by teachers for teachers organisations’ are trying to solve the wrong problems with the wrong solutions; if they actually had mostly real teachers from real mixed state schools on their advisory panels, they’d know that the problems you’ve alluded to are the actual problems they need to address. Sadly, it is too late for you (and many others). I assume you have informed your Union. Try to negotiate a redundancy package that is more than the minimum for volunteering to go, but with only three years employment, you’ll be lucky to leave with more than a few thousand extra.

    Well done for looking abroad. If you are in your 20s or 30s with few commitments, it has to be the way to go. You won’t have any difficulties finding a good job but don’t feel desperate to take the first one. There are some great opportunities in Bangkok if you find the right school. China and Vietnam are also investing heavily in education, but know your worth and do your homework! The top schools in Singapore are tough to get into but try. Personally, I’d avoid Arab countries. The pupils are entitled and uninterested and pay is not what it was compared to when I was there a few decades back.

    This is a period in your life you will always remember so enjoy it.
  19. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

  20. Dorsetdreams

    Dorsetdreams Occasional commenter

    @3monkey , please look at your 'conversations' (by hovering over your login name, top right). Cheers.

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