The ACU faculty for Education and Arts responded promptly to the recommendations of the review of initial teacher education conducted by the Teacher Education Ministerial Advisory Group (TEMAG).
The final report, Action Now: Classroom Ready Teachers, calls for a stronger integration of the activities of universities and schools preparing teachers for the profession. The report specifically calls for a focus on mentoring to enhance the development of pre-service and early career teachers and to increase student learning through mentoring practices. Stakeholders contributing to the review identified a need for improved support for beginning teachers, including mentoring by highly skilled teachers.
In response to the review, ACU has established the Education Professional Development Hub. The Hub will provide a range of face to face and online professional development programs for teachers, school leaders and ACU education students and academic staff to build capacity in mentoring and stronger professional reflection.
Phase one of the ACU Education Hub focuses on mentoring and the development of partnerships with school clusters. The Hub provides high quality professional development for teachers and school leaders engaging in pre-service teacher education and the support of beginning teachers.
ACU has already begun working with schools to establish structured and mutually beneficial partnerships to ensure that supervising teachers have the training and skills required to effectively supervise and assess professional experience placements. Initial trials have occurred in Victoria however this program is set to expand in 2016 across the National campuses at ACU. To achieve strong graduate and student outcomes ACU will continue to build partnerships with school systems and schools through the activities of the education hub in NSW, ACT and QLD over the next 12 months.
Professor Greg Graven, ACU Vice Chancellor, chaired the advisory group and will be launching the ACU Mentoring initiative on October 15 in Melbourne.