Improving teacher quality has become the hallmark of Australian education reform with a plethora of measures introduced in teacher education to improve future teachers’ instructional competencies. This policy focus has also changed the discussion of strategies for addressing disadvantages in schools; improving teacher quality, as opposed to addressing structural inequalities in the system and larger society, has become the “solution.” This paper looks at the National Exceptional Teaching for Disadvantaged Schools (NETDS), which aims to channel high performing teacher education students to disadvantaged schools. Using the taxonomy of conservative, liberal and critical approaches to education reform, the paper first identifies the ideological contradictions inherent in the program, and then discusses, drawing on post-qualitative research literature, how the program coordinators negotiated the tensions and the moral/ethical dilemmas as we designed and implemented the program for a group of external students at University of New England.
& Amazan, R.
Thinking with/through The Contradictions of Social Justice in Teacher Education: Self-Reflection on NETDS Experience.
Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 42(4).