Over the past year, students have spoken up on the need for paid placements, writing letters to politicians, posting on social media, and encouraging thousands to sign our petition. Activists from all the major unis have been meeting regularly to support each other, exchange ideas and build a community.
Pre-service teachers know their value, they can articulate their needs, and they are beginning to recognise their power. Amid critical staff shortages, they stand poised to lead change.
The AEU has launched a suite of professional learning directly informed by the needs of pre-service and early-career teachers. We know support with behaviour management is top of their list of needs. Students show an impressive knowledge of the theory behind behaviour management but want practical skills – a “good bag of tricks” – to use in the classroom.
With schools understaffed and mentor teachers exhausted, many pre-service teachers are completing their placement feeling under-prepared. They need experienced teachers to share their tips and tricks.
If you work in a school, seek out pre-service teachers on placement. Invite them to your sub-branch meetings, and help them bridge the gap between theory and practice.
It’s all about equipping the next generation of educators with knowledge about their rights and the power of the collective.