One of the priorities for Anglican EdComm is to identify, encourage and support preservice and new graduate teachers to assist their thinking about biblical perspectives to teaching and learning.
Pre-service teachers often do not come out of university with the skills to interrogate the curriculum with a biblical perspective.
Most students have completed their secular education with limited knowledge as to how their faith might impact the way they teach and what they teach.
However, it is important to note that there is nothing neutral about the curriculum - behind every curriculum in a school lies a worldview that shapes both what topics are taught and how they are taught. Every subject is suffused with underlying beliefs about person, society and what it means to flourish as a human being. The result is that all learning has the potential to shape the orientation of people’s lives. It tells a “story” about what is important and what isn’t. (Trevor Cooling)
A Christian in education needs to identify, interrogate and where necessary transform the “story” so that it is inspired by Christian ideas.
According to McCrindle Research over 80% of Australian Christians accepted Christ before they were 20 years old. Apart from the influence of parents/family and the local minister, around 15% of young people said that schooling (in particular religious education) had an influence of their decision to follow Jesus. This is compelling evidence for the role a committed Christian teacher can have in a child’s life.
Combine this with the research that many teachers find their work too demanding and 25% will leave in their first five years of employment (MCYTTA 2003) and there is further evidence of the importance of working hard to mentor teachers to retain them so that they have the willingness, ability and endurance to continue this important ministry.
Anglican EdComm wants to serve our preservice and new graduates by providing opportunities to enrich their learning and provide support as they enter the teaching profession.