|Face-to-Face Training in a Conventional Preservice Programme: A Case Study at Edgewood College of Education in South Africa (CIE, 2002, 36 p.)|
The South African teacher education climate is not very conducive to attracting new recruits to teaching. The students who have registered for teacher education programmes pay fees over four years and are not guaranteed of a job after qualifying. The MUSTER project was interested in why students wanted to study to become a teacher in a climate when there was a poor image of teaching. The responses to the questionnaire item were very refreshing, as these students indicated that they loved teaching, wanted to teach and wanted to contribute to the country by teaching children.
Some students saw the qualification could be useful if they wanted to work overseas. Most students believed that by the time they qualified there would be a demand for teachers. There is a perception among the staff that many of the White students have enrolled for a teaching qualification because they felt that they would get jobs as School Governing Body appointees at ex-White (middle class) schools. Of course these students come from families with higher financial resources and the issue of jobs are not so critical for them. About 80% of first and final year students hoped that in the future they would be teaching in an urban primary school after they had completed their training. About one-tenth of the students wanted to teach in countries abroad.
The first and fourth year students displayed positive aspirations and expectations towards teaching. Over 95% of both groups indicated that they hoped to bring changes to the school they start teaching in. Most students were aware of the negative perceptions of teachers and teaching by the community, but they were still keen to teach. The students are keen about the activity of teaching, but they did not have positive perceptions about the Department of Education and its commitment to teachers. Students however seem to enjoy teaching students in the classrooms. Most teacher trainees in this sample would probably have had school experiences in ex-White schools and these would have been better resourced and have better learning environments.