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Only teach physics, no biology please!

Discussion in 'Science' started by Goat2, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. Goat2

    Goat2 New commenter

    The latest wheeze from the TDA and Institute of Physics is to recruit physics teachers who will traine for physics and maths and not have any contact with biology or chemistry, even in KS3. In addition the new guidance from DfE ( avoiding that insidious mans' name!) is that all PGCE trainees should concentrate on their specialism, again not to teach 'science'. So
    1/ Would a physicist really be useful in your department if they do not want to move out of that narrow view?
    2/ is the idea of straight biology, physics and chemistry teachers an indication of where the new science curriculum heading?
    3 and will you actually change back to three separate subjects from what you are really doing in KS3
     
  2. Moony

    Moony Lead commenter

    Really? They want to go down that route? That's really going to mess things up for those of us thathave specialisms in some of the less well represented sciences. My specialism is Geology, i'm quite happy teaching general science at the moment whilst I wait for the all ellusive post where i can teach my subject, and even then I'd still like some general science in with that. What would he make people like me do as their specialism? Geography? If i'd wanted to teach that subject I'd have gone and trained as a geography teacher with my degree in geology, however I'm a scientist and I wanted to teach science! The fact I can also do physical geog is by the by in this case. I wonder if this will come to pass and if so how it will pan out.
     
  3. I'm retired, so this will not affect me! [​IMG]
    However, as HoD, I organised my Y7 (and Y8 if possible) classes with a Science teacher for 3h per week. The neighbouring school went for the "more academic" approach of 1hBio, 1hChem, 1hPhy. We got significantly better KS3 results!
    Our local advisor believed it was because we looked after CHILDREN. They were moving from a situation where they met only a couple of teachers to the plethora of secondary staffing. In my department oeach teacher took responsibility for that change whereas down the road it got lost because teachers were concentrating on their SUBJECT.
    Thank goodness that nice Mr Grove always looks carefully at the evidence and balances his ideological thoughts against the good of the children. [​IMG]


     
  4. I suspect this is a response to needing to be seen to do something and it not mattering whether the something actually works or not. As far as I am concerned for most pupils year 9 is early enough to have specialist teachers.
    It would be interesting to see how people trained in this way did in the jobs market and how they were timetabled.
     
  5. MarkS

    MarkS New commenter

    In my Department we have very much moved to specialist teachers at KS4 (Yrs 9-11 for us) but done the opposite with our curriculum in Yr 7/8...the modules are themed and most include at least two Sciences, showing that all the disciplines work together in modern Science.
    I can understand why there is a focus on recruiting specialist teachers...but don't see the logic of them not teaching Science at KS3.
    Mark
     
  6. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    So does this mean that there is a queue of Physics graduates who would love to be teachers as long as they don't have to sully their hands with the lesser sciences? Is this going to solve the dire shortage of Physics teachers?
     
  7. Goat2

    Goat2 New commenter

    Oky so Geology as science? no funding.
    Apparently Blazer ( nice to see you are still posting, I've had to add 2 to the moniker as changed institutions email address!) the IoP says there are plenty of physics and engineeering graduates who'd love to teach so long as they don't have to teach any nasty icky biology or smelly chemistry!.
    The payments are amazing for a government claiming we are virtually broke. think about it -each one of these will need a student loan plus another to cover the £3000 we will charge in fees!
    <table cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" class="MsoNormalTable" style="margin:auto auto auto 9pt;border-collapse:collapse;border:medium none;"><tr style="height:35.55pt;"><td style="padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:164.4pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:35.55pt;padding-top:0cm;border:black 1pt solid;">
    </td><td colspan="4" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:144pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:35.55pt;border-top:black 1pt solid;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">Physics, mathematics, chemistry, modern languages</td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:72pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:35.55pt;border-top:black 1pt solid;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">Other priority secondary specialisms - biology</td><td style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:70.9pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:35.55pt;border-top:black 1pt solid;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">General science and non-priority secondary specialisms2 </td></tr><tr style="height:21.75pt;"><td rowspan="3" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:black 1pt solid;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:164.35pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:21.75pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">Training bursary 2012/13 </td><td style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:71.7pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:21.75pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">Trainee with first </td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;background-color:transparent;padding-left:5.4pt;width:71.7pt;padding-right:5.4pt;height:21.75pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">&pound;20,000 </td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;background-color:transparent;padding-left:5.4pt;width:71.7pt;padding-right:5.4pt;height:21.75pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">&pound;9000 </td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;background-color:transparent;padding-left:5.4pt;width:71.85pt;padding-right:5.4pt;height:21.75pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">&pound;0 </td></tr><tr style="height:8.7pt;"><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:72.05pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:8.7pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">2.1 </td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;background-color:transparent;padding-left:5.4pt;width:72pt;padding-right:5.4pt;height:8.7pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">&pound;15,0003 </td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;background-color:transparent;padding-left:5.4pt;width:72pt;padding-right:5.4pt;height:8.7pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">&pound;5000 </td><td rowspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;background-color:transparent;padding-left:5.4pt;width:70.9pt;padding-right:5.4pt;height:8.7pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;"> </td></tr><tr style="height:7.95pt;"><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:72.05pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:7.95pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">2.2 </td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:72pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:7.95pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">&pound;12,000 </td><td colspan="2" style="border-bottom:black 1pt solid;border-left:#ece9d8;padding-bottom:0cm;padding-left:5.4pt;width:72pt;padding-right:5.4pt;background:white;height:7.95pt;border-top:#ece9d8;border-right:black 1pt solid;padding-top:0cm;">&pound;0 </td></tr><tr><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td><td style="background-color:transparent;border:#ece9d8;"> </td></tr></table>General science,&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;, applied science,&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;..courses attract no bursary. "General science ITT courses are not as effective as specialist courses in preparing trainees to teach physics, chemistry and biology.
    [/b], rather than science as a single subject."
    Link to full document:
    http://media.education.gov.uk/assets/files/pdf/t/training%20our%20next%20generation%20of%20outstanding%20teachers%20nov%202011.pdf
    You will note it says " preparing to teach the three disciplines" No mention of science. But then insidious man was most likley independent school edcuated and only did separate science from 11.
     
  8. My guess is that there is a good number of physics/astronomy/engineering gradutes who would be far more prepred to teach Physics/maths rather than physics, chemistry and biology.
    There has been a steady decline in the number of physics graduates wishing to teach. Crisis in Physics by Alan Smithers and Pamela Robinson highlights the real problems we have.
    I am not sure why biologists and chemists should view their's as lesser sciences just because physicists would rather teach physics only or physics and maths.
    Cynically, I have always felt the NC science changes of 1988 was as much to do with hiding the even then shortage of physics teachers as providing a science course.
    Tinkering has had little effect on the number of physics teachers entering the profession. Paying them more would suite me but at this stage allowing them to teach maths is a less provocative course of action
     
  9. MarkS

    MarkS New commenter

    Once the next generation of Physicists is trained (i.e. qualified), I can't see most Science Departments being able to guarantee them no teaching of KS3 'Science'.
    Besides, as a Physicist myself, I'd rather teach KS3 Science than maths as a subject...pure maths doesn't really interest me other than as a tool to use for Physics.
    Mark
     
  10. And that is as it should be. If you wish to teach BCP/science so be it. But we need to allow those who want to teach maths instead to be allowed to do so.
    Personally, I would rather teach maths than science/BC. I have manged to teach only physics for all my 30 years of teaching (with the exception of one year of 1st year biology and one year of 1st year chemistry) and I trained to teach physics/maths.
     

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