Beginning Teacher Standards for Physical Education: Promoting A Democratic Ideal?

Jan. 01, 2012

Source: Teaching and Teacher Education, Volume 28, Issue 1 (January, 2012), p. 78-88.
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)

This article investigates teacher educators’ perspectives on the purposes, benefits and drawbacks of adopting a subject-specific standards-based approach in Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) in Ireland.

Thirteen physical education teacher educators participated in the study including five teacher educators in physical education at the primary/elementary level and eight teacher educators at the post-primary/secondary/high school level.

These participants were drawn from nine teacher education institutions with PETE programmes on the island of Ireland (both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland).

A cross-sectional qualitative methodology employing semi-structured interviews was used.

Findings and Discussion

The teacher educators saw the Beginning Teacher Standards for Physical Education (BTSfPE) as a mechanism for consensus within the profession, to set clear expectations for beginning teachers and support teachers’ professional development.

The teacher educators were supportive of adopting a standards-based approach grounded in a democratic ideology to increase accountability, enhance professionalism and improve the status of physical education in higher education and school contexts.

The participants cautioned against narrow or restrictive regulation of the standards, emphasizing the importance of flexible application in each institution and reflecting a desire to promote a democratic ideology of teacher professionalism within physical education in Ireland.

Updated: Apr. 03, 2013