Professional Issues for Primary Teachers


Edited by: Ann Browne & Derek Haylock

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    The Authors

    Ann Browne is a senior lecturer in education at the University of East Anglia where she works with primary Postgraduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) students and practising teachers. She has written a number of books about teaching English in the early years, including Developing Language and Literacy 3–8 (2nd edition, 2001), A Practical Guide to Teaching Reading in the Early Years and Helping Children to Write, all published by Paul Chapman Publishing, and Teaching Writing at Key Stage 1 and Before, published by Nelson Thornes (1999).

    Derek Haylock is an author and educational consultant who has worked in primary teacher training for over 30 years. Until recently he was mathematics tutor and Co-Director of the Primary PGCE course at the University of East Anglia (UEA), Norwich. His books include Mathematics Explained for Primary Teachers (2nd edition, 2001), Numeracy for Teaching (2001), Teaching Mathematics to Low Attainers 8–12 (1991) and (with Anne Cockburn) Understanding Mathematics in the Lower Primary Years (2nd edition, 2002), all published by Paul Chapman Publishing. He has also had published seven books of Christian drama and a Christmas musical.

    Rob Barnes is a senior lecturer in education at UEA and teaches information and communications technology (ICT) and Art and Design on the primary PGCE. His books include Teaching Art to Young Children 4–9 (2nd edition), Art Design and Topic Work 8–13, Positive Teaching, Positive Learning and Successful Study for Degrees (3rd edition).

    Gill Blake has been Headteacher of Cringleford First and Middle School in Norwich for 14 years. She has spent 30 years teaching in a variety of primary schools and one year in which she was seconded to work as a tutor on the UEA Primary PGCE. She was a founding member of the UEA Primary Partnership Development Group.

    Tony Blake has been the headteacher of St Mary's Middle School in Long Stratton, near Norwich, for the past 16 years. Prior to that he was a deputy and class teacher in Norwich and London. He is a member of the National Middle Schools Forum Steering Group and has served on a number of local education authority (LEA) and university committees dealing with a wide range of educational issues. He was a founding member of the UEA Primary Partnership Development Group.

    Helena Campion is a tutor in Education on the Primary PGCE course at the University of East Anglia. She has taught for 10 years across the primary school age range. Her research interests are in the fields of Information Technology and the learning environment.

    Sue Cox is a Lecturer in Education at UEA. She contributes to the Primary PGCE and has joint responsibility for co-ordinating the continuing professional development programme for the school. She taught in primary schools for 12 years and has worked in teacher education for 18 years. Her publications include articles and chapters in books on primary curriculum and pedagogy including the teaching of primary art and action research in teacher education.

    Peter Gibley is headteacher of Nelson First School in Norwich. Before he came into teaching he was a baker and an actor. He taught British Forces children in Germany before taking over a tiny first school in rural Norfolk. He is now head of a large urban school. He is also a magistrate with a special interest in family work.

    Sue Lawes is a recent entrant to the teaching profession, teaching in a Norwich Primary School. She trained on the UEA Primary PGCE course.

    Ralph Manning is a tutor in primary teaching training at the University of East Anglia. Previously he taught in primary schools in Bedfordshire and Norfolk. He is a founding member of the General Teaching Council, to which he was elected by primary teachers in 2000. Prior to entering the teaching profession he worked in the computer industry for many years.

    Ann Oliver is a Co-Director of the Primary PGCE course at the UEA. Prior to becoming a Primary PGCE science tutor she taught across Key Stages 1 and 2. She has researched teacher recruitment and attitudes towards science education. Her publications include articles about interactive science centres, teaching science through stories and chapters in Teaching Children 3–11, published by Paul Chapman Publishing.

    Linda Rudge is the Director of the Keswick Hall Centre for Research and Development in Religious Education (RE) at the University of East Anglia. She teaches RE on the Primary PGCE programme and works with teachers on continuing professional development courses and in-service training. Her research interests and publications cover policy issues in RE, the professional needs of teachers, and the faiths, beliefs and values of teachers and their pupils.

    Jenifer Smith is a tutor in Education at UEA, contributing to the English and drama curriculum components of the Primary PGCE. She has joint responsibility for co-ordinating the Continuing Professional Development programme for the school. She has worked as an English specialist adviser for Suffolk County Council and been actively involved in induction and in-service training for the teaching of English in schools. Her publications include a number of edited volumes of classic literature in the Cambridge Literature Series.

    Fiona Thangata recently joined the Primary PGCE team at the University of East Anglia as a mathematics tutor. She has worked in England, Scotland, Namibia and the USA as a classroom teacher, curriculum developer, in-service provider and teacher trainer.

    Barbara Vanlint is a primary school teacher and has taught at Mundesley Junior School on the Norfolk coast for the past 12 years. In 1999 she became a Farmington Institute Millenium Award holder, based at the UEA Keswick Hall Centre for RE, and wrote a paper entitled ‘Children's spiritual development – why should we care?’.

    Jacqueline Watson was an RE teacher for 10 years. She has been a research associate with the Keswick Hall RE Centre at UEA for the past six years, which have included research on citizenship and RE for a Farmington Fellowship. Her research interests include spiritual development, Religious Education and citizenship, and RE teachers' self-portrayals.

    Maggie Woods is a School Development Adviser working with special schools and Education Support Centres in Hertfordshire. She has worked in special education for 18 years and has been headteacher of two special schools catering for pupils with moderate and severe learning difficulties. She has just completed her doctorate research at UEA looking at assessment and pedagogy for pupils in special schools in the context of RE.


    The influence of primary education on shaping our lives cannot be underestimated. Everyone remembers something from their early days in school. It might be the smell of polish or disinfectant, the sound of the bell or the sunlight filling the space in the hall as you walked into assembly. It might be feeling scared because you had to read a whole sentence in front of the class, or being milk monitor for the first time. It might be enjoying creative lessons, art, embroidery and cooking, or having a new exercise book in which to write. It might be playing or singing in a musical event or taking part in a dramatic production. It might be listening to your teacher read stories. It might be the pride associated with an unexpected achievement or the embarrassment of failure. The strength of these memories is an indication of the importance that those years in primary school have held for us as individuals. It is important, therefore, that all primary school teachers are dedicated to making that experience as effective and as happy as possible for all pupils. This involves being thoroughly professional. This book is intended to be a contribution to raising the awareness of primary teachers and trainee teachers as to what is involved in all the different professional dimensions of their work in schools.

    Professional Issues for Primary Teachers is a companion volume to Teaching Children 3–11 (edited by Anne Cockburn, also published by Paul Chapman Publishing). This new book also emanates from the primary team at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, but with significant contributions from a number of other colleagues who are associated in some way with the university.

    Since our collective experience has been mainly in the UK, specifically in England, we inevitably draw on primary practice, legislation and government guidance in this country. Readers in other parts of the UK and oversees will nevertheless find that the principles dealt with here have a more general relevance.

    The book deals with the key professional issues in primary teaching that are addressed in primary teacher training courses. It contributes specifically to the QTS Standards for Professional Values and Practice (DfES/TTA, 2002). The book aims to enable the reader to understand the nature of primary education in England and the professional demands made upon primary school teachers, including those from parents, the children themselves, the law, government agencies, society and the profession.

    Some chapters are written by tutors on the primary PGCE course at UEA, others by practising headteachers or teachers in schools within the UEA primary partnership, and some by teachers or advisers undertaking educational research at UEA. This blend of authors is a feature of the book, providing what we hope is a useful mixture of demands upon the reader. We also hope that you will enjoy the opportunities to engage with some of the philosophical aspects of primary school teaching, that you will find your thinking about professional issues is given shape and that you get from this book the basic information you need to operate in your own professional context.

    Each chapter contains an explanation and discussion of the issues, issues for reflection, a summary of key points and annotated suggestions for further reading. Tutors working with professional development groups of primary trainees will find the questions posed in the issues for reflection to be helpful starting points for discussions.

    The Internet websites to which we refer in this book were consulted during the period April to August 2003. Addresses and details were correct at the dates of consultation but may have been subject to subsequent change.

    Derek Haylock, University of East Anglia, Norwich

    Ann Browne, University of East Anglia, Norwich

    Abbreviations and Acronyms

    ACPCArea Child Protection Committee
    ADDattention deficit disorder
    ADHDattention deficit hyperactivity disorder
    ASDautistic spectrum disorder
    ASTadvanced skills teachers
    ATLAssociation of Teachers and Lecturers
    BESDbehavioural, emotional and social difficulty
    CEcitizenship education
    CEDPCareer Entry and Development Profile
    DfESDepartment for Education and Skills
    DoHDepartment of Health
    EALEnglish as an additional language
    EAZEducation Action Zone
    EBDemotional and behavioural difficulty
    ESOEducation Supervision Order
    GMCGeneral Medical Council
    GTCGeneral Teaching Council
    GTCEGeneral Teaching Council for England
    GTCSGeneral Teaching Council for Scotland
    GTCWGeneral Teaching Council for Wales
    HMCIHer Majesty's Chief Inspector of Schools
    HRAHuman Rights Act
    ICTinformation and communications technology
    IEPindividual education plan
    ISCTIPIndependent Schools Council Teacher Induction Panel
    ITTinitial teacher training
    LEAlocal education authority
    LSAlearning support assistant
    MLDmoderate learning difficulty
    MSImulti-sensory impairment
    NACENational Association for Able Children in Education
    NASENNational Association of Special Educational Needs
    NASUWTNational Association of Schoolteachers Union of Women Teachers
    NCCNational Curriculum Council
    NQTNewly-qualified teacher
    NLSNational Literacy Strategy
    NNSNational Numeracy Strategy
    NUTNational Union of Teachers
    OFSTEDOffice for Standards in Education
    PANDAperformance and assessment data
    PcfREProfessional Council for Religious Education
    PDphysical difficulty
    PEphysical education
    PECSpicture exchange system
    PEPpersonal education plan
    PGCEPostgraduate Certificate of Education
    PNIphysical and neurological impairment
    PMLDprofound and multiple learning difficulty
    PPAplanning, preparation and assessment
    PRparental responsibility
    PSHEpersonal, social and health education
    PTAparent-teacher association
    QCAQualifications and Curriculum Authority
    QTSqualified teacher status
    REreligious education
    SACREStanding Advisory Council for Religious Education
    SCAASchools Curriculum and Assessment Authority
    SENspecial educational need(s)
    SENCOspecial educational needs co-ordinator
    SLDsevere learning difficulty
    SpLDspecific learning difficulty
    STRBSchool Teachers' Review Body
    TAteaching assistant
    TEACCHTreatment and Education of Autistic and Related Communication Handicapped Children
    TPLFTeachers' Professional Learning Framework
    TTATeacher Training Agency
    UEAUniversity of East Anglia
    VAvoluntary aided (school)
    VCvoluntary controlled (school)
    VLEvirtual learning environment
  • References

    In the references below the following abbreviations and acronyms are used:

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    DfEEDepartment for Education and Employment
    DfESDepartment for Education and Skills
    DoHDepartment of Health
    GTCEGeneral Teaching Council of England
    OFSTEDOffice for Standards in Education
    NACENational Association for Able Children in Education
    QCAQualifications and Curriculum Authority
    TTATeacher Training Agency
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    The following websites, referenced in the text, were consulted during the period April to August 2003. Addresses and details were correct at the dates of consultation but may have been subject to subsequent change.
    Alternatives in Education website,
    BBC Schools website,
    Birmingham Grid for Learning website,
    Britkid website,
    Centre for the Study of Inclusive Education website,
    Croner CCH Edinfo-Centre website,
    DfES website, Ethnic Minority Achievement section,
    DfES website, Special Educational Needs section,
    DfES website, Standards Site, Primary section,
    East Riding Intranet for Learning website,
    European Roma Rights Center website,
    Farmington Institute for Christian Studies website,
    Governornet website, Information for School Governors,
    Kids Health website,
    McGraw Hill website, Multicultural Supersite,
    Multicultural Pavilion website,
    NACE website,
    National Association for Special Educational Needs website,
    National Confederation of PTAs website,
    National Curriculum website, Gifted and Talented Guidance,
    National Grid for Learning website,
    Norfolk Esinet for Learning website,
    National Statistics Online website,
    Optimus Publishing website,
    Parent Centre website,
    Professional Council for Religious Education website, http://www.pcfre/
    Pyramid Educational Consultants UK Ltd website, picture exchange communication system,
    QCA website, Curriculum and Assessment section,
    Raising Boys' Achievement website,
    Random House website,
    Religious Exchange Service website,
    Ride Foundation website,
    Runnymede Trust website,
    Teacher Net website,
    TEACCH website,
    The Guardian Education website,
    The Guardian website, GTCE/Guardian/MORI 2003 Teacher Survey,
    Times Educational Supplement website, EAL section,
    TTA website, NQT induction section,
    University of East Anglia Keswick Hall Centre for RE website,
    C: MACNT indxltd primteach 8-03-2004 8:46.45 am

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