Category Archives: Education

Get Enlightened About International Teaching Jobs

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International schools are increasingly becoming more popular as their students are continually getting admissions to the best universities around the globe. It is therefore evident that the quality of education that these schools provide deserves global respect. The schools have increased in number resulting to high demand for teaching staff and therefore international teaching jobs are readily available for experienced and passionate teachers.

International teaching jobs are sought after by many teachers who want to get experience or exposure associated with teaching in another country besides their own. The kind of experience acquired cannot be measured in terms of material or financial wealth but in terms of professional enhancement and new social interactions with staff and children from different countries.

Countries such as Thailand have many international teaching opportunities since the government is committed to hiring foreign teachers to teach at public schools for equally high salaries. This move is to try and improve the level of English language and the general education status. Other countries with many vacancies for international teachers include but not limited to: Central America, the Gulf, South America, Asia pacific and North Africa. Continue reading

Improving Teacher Effectiveness

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Teacher effectiveness, while not the only important factor in improving education, still plays an important role. Improving it is something which every education department, in every country, has attempted to deal with at one time or another, but due to a number of reasons, most countries have yet to be successful. Both due to a lack of political will, a lack of investment, and misplaced aims, a number of policies which have been put into practice have fallen well short of the mark, and Pasi Sahlberg believes he understands why.

Pasi Sahlberg is partially responsible for the educational reforms undertaken in his home country of Finland, which saw a massive turnaround in their educational system, pushing them from a middle tier country in quality of education listings all the way to being a top competitor. Since producing these great policy changes, he has gone on to become an author and consultant for governments who want to see the same occur in their own countries.

In a report he wrote about the USA education system, he indicated a number of issues with the quality of education, but disagrees with the methods currently in use to combat them. Most importantly, he argues, is that monitoring the teacher’s effectiveness in the role after they’ve already gotten approval is the wrong way to do it, and teacher effectiveness should be improved by implementing more stringent requirements on their entry into the profession as well as greater rewards for being a teacher.

Is Teacher Effectiveness the Only Important Metric for Education Policy?

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Teacher effectiveness is a judgement made on how effective teachers are at their job. Thanks to some complex statistical analysis, we have been able to find out exactly how much the results of students in education is influenced by the quality of their teachers, such as with examinations of standardised tests.

Teacher effectiveness is championed by a lot of education reformers as the area of education policy which should be targeted and focussed upon for improvement, but if you examine the totality of what statistics of education results show, then you can see how other areas hold as much or more influence. Take child poverty as an example; this brings with a whole host of problems which ultimately become a teachers responsibility, and while a good teacher can overcome some of these issues, it is well outside of anybody’s capabilities to do this reliably and on mass.

If you look at the examples set by some of the most widely acclaimed education departments, then you can see a trend beyond simply managing and improving upon teacher effectiveness. Finland for instance; uses a number of public policies to ensure that children aren’t too disadvantaged, and rather than placing the focus on teachers and their individual efforts (like in teacher reviews) they focus on reviewing the efforts of schools as a whole, viewing the efforts of individuals with the understanding that they are part of a team.

How Early Should Sex Education Begin

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There is no doubt that the cat is out of the bag regarding sex. Children are exposed to sexually charged marketing material made for adults on a daily basis by watching TV, and the ready access to more explicit materials which can be found online are also a daily concern.

It elicits some interesting questions, therefore, about how early sex education should begin, and what exactly should be the aim of it. These questions recently rose to prominence in the UK, with discussions on whether sex education should begin during primary school. As children are already starting to get online at this age, with social media accounts, and with the advertisements on TV often being sexually charged, there is now mounting evidence that this might be the best option.

A lot of education forums and organisations are fully supportive of lowering the age at which students are introduced to sex at schools, but the government has so far held off agreeing to change policy.

The Rise of Free Ebooks Covering School Syllabi

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Recently one of the top private schools in the UK has released their textbooks online as a free downloadable ebook, which has made many students and schools very happy. Things like this are likely to be one of the best pieces of news for schools around the world.

One of the biggest impediments to improving schools is the costs, of which textbooks are a massive contributor. With the typical textbook costing anywhere from £10-30 (with the better ones being more expensive ), when you multiply that by a 8.3 million students which are currently in school in the UK, then you’re talking about tens of millions every year being spent on textbooks.

Even though we’ve had this good news courtesy of the Stephen Perse Foundation in Cambridge, most textbooks in the UK and around the world are still bought as hard copies. There are a number of options for free books, but due to the common practice of school administrations as well as the poor quality of most of them (or how they don’t match certain syllabi), most don’t use them. Most believe it is only a matter of time though.