A voice that I would like to raise in education is that of teachers. Often the loudest voices in education discussions are those of law makers, policy makers and celebrities. Perhaps we hear from school leaders, maybe from parents or governing boards. But the people who have the most experience to draw on are teachers.
Teachers spend their days interacting with students, parents, school leaders, and other teachers. Their day job is creating the environment of school – making a place where students can learn and grow. Teachers interpret new policies, enact legislation that is created, follow new guidelines, and work according to new standards. They see the direct impact of changes, they experience the way school culture changes over time, and they witness whether or not students benefit from changes.
While teachers’ voices often seem powerful to their students, we don’t tend to hear the voices of teachers when policy about schools is being created. Although teachers are integral to how schools operate, other people often talk for or about teachers and the voices of teachers go unheard. A voice that I would like to raise in education is that of teachers.
My name is Emily Winchip and, in addition to being a contributor to this blog and podcast, I am a PhD Candidate at the University of Nottingham. My PhD research is focused on the experiences of teachers in for-profit international schools. My research interests include privatized education systems, the ways that private-like practices are sneaking into schools, and the way teachers experience privatization of schools. I approach my research with a critical feminist approach and I am dedicated to seeking out voices of people who are unheard, under-valued, or invisible.