Source: European Journal of Teacher Education, Volume 32, Issue 4 (November 2009), pages 383 – 399.
The authors discuss an investigation into the understandings of trainee teachers about government policy. The authors use, as an example, the UK government's 'Every Child Matters' (ECM).
The authors discuss the research methods used to gather and analyze data from 197 initial teacher education trainees in three institutions in England drawn from six subject areas.
The project focused on trainees' reactions to the anticipated outcomes of ECM and their confidence to help implement the initiative in their roles as form tutors (home room teachers) and subject teachers. Trainees react positively to ECM but reveal uncertainty about its precise meaning and about the roles they would need to adopt as teachers.
The authors suggest that it is problematic for governments to expect teacher education communities to assist with the implementation of policies that have been inadequately characterized. The authors make recommendations about the role of initial teacher education in the further development of ECM.