The graduate teacher programme in England: mentor training, quality assurance and the findings of inspection
Brookes, W. (2005) The graduate teacher programme in England: mentor training, quality assurance and the findings of inspection. Professional Development in Education (formerly Journal of In-service Education), 31 (1). pp. 43-62. ISSN 1941-5257
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1080/13674580500200268
In its recent report on the Graduate Teacher Programme (GTP), an employment-based route to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) in England, the Government's Office for Standards in Education found that, although almost all trainees meet the standards required to qualify, too often they do so at an adequate level, rather than achieving the high levels of which they should be capable. The underlying reason for this is the quality of mentoring provided in the schools. The inspectors concluded that schoolbased trainers are often not adequately prepared for their role in implementing wide-ranging training programmes for trainee teachers. Despite this generally bleak picture, Ofsted concluded that 'the minority of cases of good practice in the training programmes and of high quality teaching by trainees indicate that the GTP can be an effective alternative route for training teachers'™. This article considers the strengths and weaknesses of the Graduate Teacher Programme, introduced in January 1998, and also reports on a small-scale project, funded by the Teacher Training Agency (TTA), the key objective of which was to strengthen the existing partnerships by improving the quality of school-based tutor training and continuous professional development of staff.