I earn a crust from doing inset. Yes, one of those charlatans that “teaches teachers how to teach” ‘cos he hasn’t got a clue how to hack it in the real world. Shoot me down in flames!
When I “teach teachers how to teach” my aim is generally this: I want them to walk away thinking to themselves, “Bloody hell! I am allowed to teach! I am allowed to think for myself! I am allowed to be me! I’m really good at being me! I feel all warm and tingly!”
Often this message goes down a storm and lots of teachers lap up the idea, “People, you’re the grown-ups! You’re the subject experts! Think! Know what you believe in! Be what you believe in! Don’t be a box-ticking lobotomised automaton! You deserve better! Give it some welly! You are what you are, and what you are, needs no excuses! So what…
I examine how ideas associated with what are commonly termed evidence-based practice (EBP) and evidence based teaching (EBT) have been re-formed and interpreted by governments and state funded gateways for teachers in the lifelong learning sector in England (such as LLUK, SVUK, LSIS, DFE, Ofsted). I chart the relationship between interpretations of educational research and EBP/T and teacher education policy and practice in the sector from the early 1990’s until the most recent reviews of vocational education (the Wolf
Report) and Professionalism in Further Education (Lingfield Report 2012). Links are made between notions of routinised practices (Iredale 2012) and the ‘ruinous twins’ of evidence and policy. The conclusion will caution against the influence of both simplistic ‘evidence-based’ approaches on teachers, systematic review, and the rising tendency for policymakers and managers in the sector to lose interest in wider more critical educational research.
“HERE is Edward Bear, coming downstairs now, bump, bump, bump. It is, as far as he knows, the only way of coming downstairs, but sometimes he feels that there really is another way, if only he could stop bumping for a moment and think of it”.