education and knowledge

OECD warns about the quality level of teachers in France

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How can we guarantee all students a quality education with motivated teachers? According to the 6e According to the 2015 PISA study, the problem in France is not the "quantity" but the "quality" of education. Analysis confirmed today by the new OECD PISA study: the inequalities in student achievement, which are very marked socially in France, are largely explained by disparities in access to quality teachers and that, in disadvantaged areas, schools with more autonomy, which can recruit more freely, suffer less teacher shortages. Explanations.
 
Ahis report Effective Teacher Policies: Insights from PISA analyses the results of the PISA global education survey to show how countries can improve the quality and equity of education by ensuring that all students receive a quality education. The report also provides analyses of the first PISA survey of teachers, which provided information on their jobs, careers and school heads.
In September 2016, an unprecedented survey carried out over two years by 22 teams of French and foreign researchers provided "a diagnosis of social and migratory inequalities at school". It found that, despite the policies implemented, French schools continue to "manufacture injustice at school". And the 6th edition of PISA in 2015 confirmed that the French education system was still "average" while being too unequal.
Average Student In the 2000s, France is now at the very bottom of the OECD's ranking of school inequalities, as revealed by the Conseil national d'évaluation du système scolaire (Cnesco) in the same study.
 
Why? Notably because schools in France continue to treat disadvantaged pupils in priority education network classes less well. Pupils in these difficult schools are also less well off, in particular because the number of contract or beginning teachers assigned to them has increased over the last ten years. For example, there are twice as many teachers under 30 years of age in priority education as elsewhere. Difficult schools, often with a priority network, receive many beginning teachers and suffer from a high level of team instability. The number of new teachers assigned to schools deemed "difficult" has increased sharply since 2011, from 1,738 in 2011 to 3,185 in 2016. The proportion of neo-holders assigned to this type of institution has increased (20 % in 2011, 23.6 % in 2016). In addition to the lack of pedagogical experience in front of the class, this practice has the disadvantage of increasing the instability of teaching teams in schools with the greatest educational difficulties. (Source : Report of the Court of Auditors - October 2017).
 
The report also shows that only 19 % of teachers in disadvantaged high schools are certified, hold a Capes or agrégation... compared to 90 % of certified or agrégé teachers in the most advantaged high schools. One pupil in five in disadvantaged schools (compared with 1 in 10 in more privileged schools) therefore has unqualified teachers.
The National Education system hires contract workers, often at short notice and without adequate training, to "fill in the gaps".
 
"In most countries, a student's or school's postal code remains one of the best predictors of educational success, said Mr Andreas Schleicher, who heads the OECD Directorate for Education and Skills, on the occasion of the report's presentation in Madrid. "This shows that countries can enhance equality of opportunity if they assign the best teachers - not just more teachers - to the most difficult schools. Teacher policies have a crucial role to play in the future of millions of young people who are currently struggling to build their own. ».
 
Head teachers responding to the survey emphasized that the lack of qualified teachers was a major obstacle to addressing disadvantage and improving learning. Most countries and economies are trying to compensate for the disadvantages of disadvantaged schools by introducing smaller class sizes and/or higher pupil/teacher ratios. Yet in more than a third of them, teachers in disadvantaged schools are less qualified or less experienced than those in more privileged schools.
 
Differences in educational outcomes related to socio-economic background are greater in countries where disadvantaged schools employ fewer qualified and experienced teachers than better-off schools. The report argues that efforts can still be made during initial teacher training, mentoring and professional development to equip teachers with the skills they will need to work in disadvantaged schools.
 
In the best performing education systems, teacher policies share three characteristics: a long compulsory period of practical classroom training before starting, opportunities for in-service professional development (e.g. through school-organized workshops), and teacher appraisal mechanisms with a strong emphasis on in-service training. 
Should we not also make the salaries of teachers more attractive, especially those who will go to work in the most disadvantaged areas, with financial incentives, as is the case in the United Kingdom or the United States? This was Jean-Michel Blanquer's proposal, proposing a €3,000 bonus for teachers who would go to priority schools. But the premium is slow to come into effect...

More autonomy in the management of institutions

Would head teachers who can recruit their own teachers be one of the best ways to increase equity between schools? This would be in line with the Minister of National Education, who has several times stated his willingness to launch the "school empowerment" project.
On average, in all countries and economies participating in the PISA 2006 and 2015 surveys, giving schools more autonomy in recruiting their teachers seems to have led to better school performance, while less autonomy tended to worsen results.
Headteachers with more flexibility to adapt teachers' responsibilities, working conditions and remuneration are also better able to attract the best professionals to the most difficult classes.
For the OECD, greater institutional autonomy would bring greater equity in the distribution of teachers.
 
A second report, Skills in Ibero-America: Insights from PISA and TALISA study of the teaching profession in the Ibero-American region, which assesses the teaching profession in the Ibero-American region, shows that countries need to invest more in their schools and teachers, building on their commitment to reform and supporting their improvement.

Supporting and valuing the teaching profession

"Most countries could do better by observing how teachers are affected. This means looking not only at the number of teachers but also at their qualifications, experience and effectiveness. Many systems could also do more to meet the needs of teachers, especially new teachers, in disadvantaged schools," says the OECD.
As the international PISA study points out, the French teacher works alone. Only 3% teachers use a tutor compared to an average of 13% in OECD countries. 78% of them never observe the work of a colleague. As for working conditions, they are steadily deteriorating, according to a recent study by the OECD. survey published by UNSA. According to the results, the teaching profession is today one of the most exposed to psychosocial risks. 7 out of 8 teachers would find it difficult to sleep because of the work and almost a third would find this job exhausting ....
 
Yet the report also reveals that, on average in OECD countries, 4.2 % of 15-year-old students want to become teachers - a much higher proportion than the current percentage of teachers in the population (2.4 %). While girls in all countries are more likely to want to teach than boys, the aspirations of girls and boys in this area are more balanced in countries where teachers are better paid .
 
 

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