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Calling for ‘urgent national action to improve the quality of initial teacher education’: the reification of evidence and accountability in reform agendas

journal contribution
posted on 2019-01-01, 00:00 authored by Emma RoweEmma Rowe, Andrew SkourdoumbisAndrew Skourdoumbis
In early 2015, the Australian Government and an associated Ministerial Group called for ‘urgent national action to improve the quality of initial teacher education’. Following this call for action, the Australian Government launched a series of reforms into initial teacher education, targeting ‘teacher quality’ and ‘classroom readiness’. The reforms are based on a logic of deficiency within initial teacher education, mandating new accreditation processes, standardized assessments and the National Literacy and Numeracy Test for pre-service teachers. In this paper we set out to explore these reforms, considering the policy trajectories, technologies and technicist network in which they are operationalized. We propose the concept of reification and objectification to examine the institutionalization of auditing, standardization, and accountability. These reforms aim to intervene in both the content and delivery of initial teacher education. We argue that reforms such as these recondition our conceptions of professionalism and teacher quality. There is a contraction in scope for progressive or experiential teacher education, and moreover, the ongoing de-professionalism of teachers and teacher educators, whom are subjected to constant surveillance.

History

Journal

Journal of education policy

Volume

34

Issue

1

Pagination

44 - 60

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

Location

Abingdon, Eng.

ISSN

0268-0939

eISSN

1464-5106

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2017, Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group