Education leaders take aim at teachers' conditions, learning quality

by Robert Ballantyne21 May 2015

Some of the most innovative thinkers in education will present their views and findings at the Independent Education Union’s (IEU) Securing Our Future, Best Practice Induction and Mentoring Conference on 21-22 May.
 
Keynote speakers such as Dr Sean Kearney from the University of Notre Dame and associate professor, Philip Riley, from the Australian Catholic University, will discuss how the profession can better support early career teachers and their mentors.
 
Participants from around the country will attend the conference to hear academics and teachers from regional and urban Australia explore what best practice induction and mentoring for teachers should look like, and what can be done to improve it.
 
IEU General Secretary, John Quessy, said that despite improvements in conditions within the profession there is “still a long way to go” before teachers get the conditions and level of support they need.
 
“Some beginning teachers are having a rough ride, with no formal access to a mentor. We’ve come a long way since teachers were simply given the key to the classroom and expected to get on with it, but we still have a way to go,” Quessy said.
 
“It is crucial that as a union we support improving conditions and practice for the benefits of the profession, and the community at large. This conference reflects the union’s commitment to the profession and its practitioners now and in the future.”
 
IEU professional officer, Amy Cotton, said the IEU was lobbying hard for more support from government to provide better training for new teachers.
 
“This presents more challenges, as many early childhood teachers work alone in centers, minimising their chance of being mentored by an experienced teacher. We’re going to discuss solutions to this problem,” Cotton said.
 
 

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