What it means to be a professional… (VIDEO)

This video documentary gives us the views of several teachers on what it means to be a professional. I feel they only skim the surface of some of the issues relating to being a professional, but nonetheless I do agree with what they have to say.

Largely, I have considered that being a teaching professional you have to present yourself in a way, which allows you to be a good role model for your pupils as well as the broader community. The teachers in the video say that this can be the achieved in the way you speak, dress and present issues to the children. I do agree with this, but think that this role model should come across in everything you do, not just in certain aspects of your job/life.

One of the teachers talks about the role of the teacher as professional in a negative light; noting that there is more benchmarking, more need for accountability and more focus on teachers as professionals in society. I think it’s important to remember that how you view this directly correlates with how it impacts on you as a teacher. I think it’s great that there’s a lot of benchmarking/ranking as it allows you to show your strength as a professional by displaying great attainment. It also gives you the chance to reflect, allowing you to grow in your role.

One comment suggests that teachers shouldn’t pass judgment on pupils based on their class etc, even with the best intentions this can be extremely difficult to achieve. However, true professionalism can be seen where teachers overcome the ideas of stereotypes to allow their pupils to achieve all that they are capable of regardless.

The idea that a teacher should be able to communicate effectively is also conveyed in the video discussion. I think this is incredibly important, you must be able to communicate with pupils, parents and staff appropriately. Parents should be involved in the learning of their child and I feel a teacher should actively achieve this by finding a route to communication which suits the family and child.

I am surprised by how little the teachers talk about development, it is mentioned at the end of the video but only briefly. It is important to keep up with changes to curriculum, new research, engaging with new technology and focusing on constant professional and personal development. I feel this is integral to the role of the professional in any job field and should have been considered in greater depth in the video.

The clip certainly gave me food for thought. It has helped me to consider my own views on professionalism and, while I agree with what they mention, contemplate the deeper aspects of what it means to be a professional.

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