TOPIC: ENHANCING TEACHERS EFFECTIVENESS
Developing nations generally spend a fairly large component of their national budgets on education. Of that, a large proportion is spent on paying up teachers’ salaries. In Indian States, the share of teacher salaries in elementary education expenditure is estimated, on an average, to be 97 per cent (World Bank 1996).
In the prevailing economic crisis world over, most developing nations are forced to contain their public expenditure. Given this scenario, it is unlikely that most developing nations will be able to increase their educational budgets in the future. This leaves very little hope for any increase in the expenditure on teachers’ ...view middle of the document...
Lack of any of these would render the schooling experience ineffective. At the physical level, school has infrastructure facilities but more importantly, teachers are the main human resource in the system. Provision of infrastructural facilities in the schools however does not guarantee that children would learn.
Citing an example of Indian Government, several schemes of the Indian government such as Operation Blackboard etc. have not produced desired results. Decentralizing teacher education through District Institutions of Education and Training (DIETs) has not brought about much change in the teacher performance (Sood, 2000) nor have the basic numeracy or literacy skills of children improved much with the District Primary Education programme (Sood, 2001). A concern is often expressed by the Indian educational planners….……. despite all efforts to put the schooling system in place, our children are still not learning in schools…….. When will our children ever start learning….?
A part of the answer to this problem lies in the teacher’s effectiveness.
This lecture deals with the concept of teacher effectiveness by examining the same in two parts. The teacher herself and her attributes. The teacher-pupil interactions inside the classroom.
Thus the two dimensions covered are:
1. Teacher Quality
2. Teaching Practice
Teacher quality would be determined by a complex interaction of several dimensions. Some of these may include teachers’ background, training received and teachers’ availability and punctuality.
1. Teachers’ background- Background variables such as teacher’s age, education level and her social class background are some of the important determinants of teacher’s quality. What is the optimum level of formal schooling a teacher must have to be effective in the classroom? Do additional university degrees contribute significantly…? Based on empirical, observational and ethnographic evidence, Farrell (1993) concludes that a minimum level of formal schooling for teachers is one that is just above the level of students i.e. primary teachers should themselves have junior secondary education; junior secondary teachers should have senior secondary education and so on. To quote …’providing or requiring more formal education than these minimums, however can be a very bad investment. Some poor nations provide university education for primary teachers.
2. Training received- Pre-service training of one or two years for primary teachers is generally considered mandatory for primary school teachers. What role does this training play in improving her teaching practice? Very little research has been done on this issue in developing nations.
In-service training seems to be more important. Here again there are very few research studies done but the evidence seems strong. The methodology followed for training is very important. The effect of in-service training is strongest when it is relatively participatory and...