OvBlog1TopLefter the past few weeks I’ve been thinking about teaching graduates – some of whom I had the privilege of addressing at a graduation ceremony last year – wondering how their first days in the classroom have been.  Did the knowledge and skills they mastered at university and on prac prepare them for the first few weeks of their career?

My thoughts turned to them because of the significant criticism of initial teacher education and teachers in general over the Christmas holiday period in some media. Teachers face a seemingly constant barrage of public criticism.

In the graduation ceremony speech I stressed that teachers need to have a vast body of knowledge to be effective, but that this knowledge isn’t enough. Teachers also need to have well-developed emotional intelligence, skills and a passion for teaching to bring this knowledge to life. In a nutshell, not just anybody can be a teacher.

US President Barack Obama, who captured our attention last year with his speech at The University of Queensland, has said of teachers: “I wouldn’t be here today if it were not for teachers like these who challenged me and pushed me and put up with me and inspired me and set me straight when they had to … If you want to guarantee that you are making a difference every single day – become a teacher.”

There are a plethora of stories about how teachers have changed lives and thus the world. Queensland’s Ian Frazer, a world-leading pioneer medical researcher, said it was a teacher who inspired him to be a scientist.

There is no doubt our student performance on some International tests can improve, but the way to achieving this improvement is to listen to teachers and work collaboratively with them in developing policies and practices.

One of the main reasons for introducing this blog is to have an informal means of obtaining the views of teachers when the QCT is developing or reviewing policies. This feedback will be considered by the Board and staff.

What our teaching graduates and all teachers need is our support – not public disparagement. They perform too important a role in our society to be treated that way. Teachers change lives and influence people who will go on to change the world as a result of that influence.

We thank you for your commitment, your expertise and the choice you have made to teach Queensland children.

If you have an important topic you would like the QCT to address in these blogs, let us know.

We look forward to conversing with you.John Ryan

John Ryan
QCT Director



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  1. Jon says:

    Despite the homage that many pay to Queensland Teachers, it is surprising that the body that maintains their registration is still called a ‘college.’ One might expect such an organisation to be called a ‘Registrar’, Association’ or even perhaps a ‘Governing body.’
    The name; ‘Queensland College of Teachers’ has never sat well with me and many of my contemporaries, simply because we have already been to college and are now (supposedly) highly trained professionals who hold positions of great importance and responsibility in the community.
    Can you imagine our Parliament being called “The Australian College of Parliamentarians’ or the list of registered doctors in Australia being called ‘The Australian College of Doctors?’
    These names would border on appearing slightly odd in the minds of most, yet as practising teachers in Queensland, we seem to have no qualms with being part of a ‘college’ even though we are qualified, experienced and have already graduated.
    What’s in a name you may well ask? Whether we like it or not, names can shape the perception and thinking of the general public in many ways, some good and some bad.
    In my opinion, being part of a ‘college’ suggests that I am somehow not quite up to the task. It can be seen as slightly demeaning and perhaps even slightly condescending.
    It is not a name that places a high value on members of a robust and demanding profession.


    • tanyachilcott says:

      Dear Jon

      Thanks for your comment. You raise some good points. Our name does conjure different viewpoints.
      What’s in a name?
      The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, the Australian College of Educators and the Royal Australasian College of Physicians are all highly respected organisations that use the name College.
      For us though, what’s far more important than our name is what we do.
      We have outstanding teachers in Queensland and our role is to uphold the standards of the profession and help elevate it.
      We want to help promote the dedicated, expert professionals who are in classrooms, and in leadership roles, who work tirelessly to improve the lives of their students.
      What’s in a name?
      We think our name is secondary to the great work teachers in this state do and secondary to our work to uphold the standards of the profession.


      John Ryan

      Liked by 1 person

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