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Research report

Teachers

Liz Slater

This review addresses the characteristics of effective teachers, tackles the problems in recruiting and securing the best candidates to teaching roles and identifies best practice in not only recruiting, but also deploying and retaining teachers.

There is overwhelming evidence that teachers have the most effect on pupil outcomes (closely followed by the quality of leadership). The OECD concluded that:

  • teachers were central to school improvement
  • in order to improve the quality and fairness of education, teachers had to be skilled and able to teach very well
  • all students had to be taught by good-quality teachers.

In fragile states, as elsewhere, besides teaching formal knowledge and skills (such as literacy and numeracy), teachers pass on values such as ‘tolerance’ and ‘citizenship’. They also pass on information crucial to survival, such as health education.

This review looks focuses on six key areas:

  • The characteristics of effective teachers.
  • Strategies for attracting high-quality candidates.
  • Recruitment to pre-service training.
  • Pre-service training and routes into the profession.
  • Deployment.
  • Performance management, reward and professional development.