90% of teacher training should be subject-specific

Clio et cetera

Initial teacher training (or education) is currently under review, and one of the issues being raised is the extent to which teacher training does enough to develop teacher knowledge of what they are teaching. Although I see this as a vital component of teacher training, I do think it rather misses the point. For me, subject knowledge is not a ‘component’ of teacher training: rather, I think that subject-specificity should run through around 90% of everything that a trainee does during their training. I want to use this post to explain why.

I shall start with the 10% that I think does not need to be subject-specific. There are clearly some generic things where it makes sense to bring together trainees from a range of subjects. Behaviour management is perhaps the most obvious (though there are still important differences between the behavioural challenges one faces in history, drama and physical…

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