Teachers get tough new set of standards

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TEACHERS in Scotland’s schools are being told to commit to the “principles of democracy and
social justice”, as part of a new set of standards for the profession.

Guidelines published by the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) will revise the required standards for teachers throughout their careers to continue learning and updating their skills.

Trainee teachers will also continue to demonstrate good literacy and numeracy skills as part of the new set of standards, which have been drawn up by teachers working in partnership with councils and academics.

The exercise, which was under­taken as part of the GTCS gaining its independence from the Scottish Government, follows on from the Donaldson Report, which was published last year and considered ways of improving teacher education.

A former chief inspector of education, Graham Donaldson’s report said many trainees lacked “basic interpersonal skills” and showed “basic weaknesses in
literacy and numeracy”, adding: “A more demanding level should be set as a prerequisite
to teach.”

The GTCS has launched a consultation on the revisions, which will run until 31 October.

Anthony Finn, chief executive, said: “GTC Scotland hopes that the revised standards, which place emphasis on key values, such as leadership and sustainability and encourage teachers to become critically informed adaptive experts within their profession, will provide a coherent framework to support teachers at all stages in their career.

“The revised professional standards encapsulate what it means to be a teacher in Scotland in the 21st century.

“This consultation is an opportunity for the educational community to have its say on proposals that will directly
affect the Scottish teaching profession. I strongly urge all teachers and interested parties to contribute their thoughts to this consultation.”