A Flying Start

Improving Initial Teacher Preparation Systems

image of A Flying Start

Addressing teacher education in all its complexity is fundamental to ensuring that all students reach their potential in today’s increasingly diverse classrooms and rapidly changing environment. This report provides insight into key features of selected teacher preparation systems by analysing the information collected in the OECD Initial Teacher Preparation (ITP) study. The ITP study investigated the policy environments of the first phase of continuous teacher learning in seven countries to identify challenges, strengths and innovations: Australia, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Norway, the United States and Wales (United Kingdom).

A Flying Start: Improving Initial Teacher Preparation Systems describes the challenges of designing and sustaining initial teacher preparation systems and proposes strategies for different levels of the system (policy, teacher education institutions and schools), based on both international evidence and practices identified in the study. The report can therefore act as a resource for policy makers, teacher educators, educational leaders, teachers and the research community.



How can we provide integrated early professional development for new teachers?

This chapter discusses the challenges countries are facing in providing a coherent support and early professional development system for new teachers. These revolve around three key aspects: overcoming the theory–practice divide, providing support to beginning teachers tailored around their specific needs, and ensuring a smooth transition from initial teacher education (ITE) to school practice by recognising induction and post-induction periods as critical in becoming professionals. The chapter then proposes some specific strategies including strengthening practical experience in engaging in critical reflection and evaluation of teaching, ensuring effective mentoring schemes with competent mentors, and securing continuity in professional support throughout the early career years. Finally, the last section suggests specific strategies for policy makers, teacher education institutions, and schools and teachers.


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