Higher tertiary entrance scores for teachers pointless

The Queensland Government should reject a proposal to lift the tertiary entrance score required to study teaching to an overall position (OP) score of 12.  The Courier-Mail reports:

QUEENSLAND could lose some of its most-talented future teachers if a proposal to introduce a uniform cut-off for a Bachelor of Education is introduced, academics warn.

Central Queensland University School of Education dean Helen Huntly has added to the voices of concern over whether a proposal to introduce an OP 12 cut-off for high school graduates will boost the quality of teachers.

The OP proposal, revealed in The Courier-Mail on Saturday, is one of 21 recommendations made in a teaching review ordered by the State Government as part of the green paper A Flying Start for Queensland Children.

Raising the required OP score may discourage some average and mediocre students from studying teaching, but it won’t lift the number of high achieving students in teaching courses, which is what the education system really needs.  To get better teachers, we will have to pay good teachers more (and bad teachers less).  Pay for the top teachers needs to increase so they stick with the profession and don’t leave for higher paying careers elsewhere.  State Government departments are chockers with ex-teachers in reasonably well paid public service positions, and it would be better for the State if the best of them left the bureaucracy and went back to the blackboard.

On the drivers of declining teacher quality across Australia, this is a useful paper:

How and why has teacher quality changed in Australia?

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