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Distilling the comparative essence of teachers’ centres in England and Spain 1960-1990: past perspectives and current potential for teacher professional development?

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

E-pub ahead of print
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>16/06/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>Research Papers in Education
Number of pages20
Publication StatusE-pub ahead of print
Early online date16/06/22
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

This paper seeks to examine a specific development in the history of teacher education to explore whether it might illuminate and inform contemporary debate. It offers a historical/comparative analysis of the contribution of teachers’ centres to the professional development of teachers in England and Spain during the late 1960s to the early 1990s. In looking back to the impact that teachers’ centres had on teachers in these very different social and political contexts, the paper examines whether, in spite of being adopted and adapted differently in the English and Spanish contexts, there was a fundamental essence of the teachers’ centre model that could transcend both time and space. Thus, although essentially historical in method and focus, the paper will problematise just how far new forms of teacher professional development have lessons to learn from older, now largely overlooked forms, as found in the practice of the teachers’ centres, with their focus on grassroots teacher autonomy and collaboration. The paper is in four parts: setting the scene and methodology; outlining the rise and fall of teachers’ centres in England and Spain; identifying the core essence of the teachers’ centre model; and finally exploring potential implications for current policy and practice.