The project raises the requirements for youth who want to study pedagogy (teaching) and proposes to increase the salaries of good teachers, among other initiatives to improve the quality of teaching in Chile.
September 10, 2013
On Tuesday, September 10, Education Commission of the Chamber of Deputies approved specifically and unanimously the draft bill, Initial Teaching Profession, which imposes higher requirements for entry into teaching careers while substantially increasing initial salaries for professionals working in the municipal and private subsidized education sector. The proposed bill now goes to the Finance Committee of the Chamber of Deputies.
In this regard, the Minister of Education, Carolina Schmidt, said, “there is consensus that the heart of the quality of education is the quality of teachers, this is where it makes a difference in the classroom . Countries with good results in education, each year their teachers ae selected from the top 30% of the best graduates of the various schools. The reality in our country is very different. In Chile, 73% of those who graduated in Pedagogy 2011 had not taken the PSU (university admission test) or had obtained less than 500 points on it. This project (bill) seeks to change this reality.”
Initial Teaching Career
The proposed bill seeks to attract the best students to teaching, dignify the profession through better pay for outstanding teachers who work in municipal and subsidized schools and establishing at the same time, higher requirements for admission to study education.
Thus, those who enter to study pedagogy must have obtained over 550 points in the PSU, or have been placed in 15% of the students with better grades in their school or have earned over 500 points and be among the top 30% of their school generation. However, higher education institutions will have 10% of their quotas available for special admission.
It also requires that both the education career and the higher education institution where students pursue their studies were accredited at the time of entry or exit. In addition, all teaching careers must be accredited no later than two years after the law comes into force that creates a new accreditation system.
And to access employment at subsidized schols or municipal schools, graduates must have taken the INICIA test, making this a mandatory assessment and offering students also the possibility of taking it at the mid-career point to evaluate their progress.
If a university has more than 30% of its graduates with insufficient results on the INICIA test, it must provide a remedial course, free, to all whose test results are insufficient.
Also, to recognize and retain outstanding teachers who choose to work in municipal or subsidized schools, the bill will create the Initial Teaching Excellence (AEPI) to deliver to teachers who have obtained 650 points or more on the PSU, or have been located in the top 10% of best performance of their career or the highest level of the INICIA test, a bonus of $ 400.000 a month for four years. For outstanding teachers who choose to work in an educational establishment with more than 60% of vulnerable students, this bonus will increase by 40% to $ 560 thousand.
For those who have entered their careers with scores between 600 and 650 points on the PSU, are between 11% and 25% better in your career or remaining in the second highest level of the INICIA, this bonus will be $ 200,000. Also rewarded with an increase of 40% to teachers who work at schools with high enrollment of vulnerable students.
It is also proposed to increase the Teaching Excellence ( AEP ), for current and future teachers eligible for an enhanced allocation . This will increase the amount of the AEP at the same level as the monthly premium for new teachers entering the system : $ 400,000, $ 300,000 and $ 200,000.
Today the AEP– benefiting 3300 teachers – ranging from $50 thousand and $150 thousand per month, 63% of teachers who take the test, achieve the bonus.
“We seek to increase the salaries of good teachers and especially for those who choose the most vulnerable schools. We need to encourage the best teachers to develop their vocation in schools and colleges where there are a greater number of vulnerable students, so we want these institutions to increase their ability to retain good teachers,” Minister Schmidt said.
Moreover, it seeks to reduce the hours of classroom lessons for teachers, increasing the time for planning and preparation of lessons. Thus, there is now a ratio of about 75/25 to 70/30 . A teacher of 44 hours, would have 13 non-school hours to be 31 hours in front of course (classroom teaching).
Source: Ministerio de Educación
Translation: Thomas Jerome Baker