How can we solve the crisis in university teacher training?
Ninety-fifth and first. An album by Springsteen or Dylan, Suze Rotolo in backshot? A highway intersection as Manhattan tumbles into East Harlem?
Perhaps not. Today sees the publication of the Higher Education Policy Institute’s 95th report, but Whither Teacher Education and Training? is the first on the topic.
Teacher supply is edging into crisis. We have been here before, a number of London schools being forced to close for sessions or days around the millennium, but at that time the resource to tackle shortfalls was readily available and the size of the secondary school age cohort wasn’t about to grow by more than 20 per cent in seven years.
Part of the problem can be attributed to a breakdown in the relationship between the principal suppliers of trained teachers, the universities, and the state. Markets abhor uncertainty, and, combined with the diminishing perceptual status of the profession, some providers and some subjects have seen applicant numbers halve.