Global Perspectives, Experiences and Implications
Edited By Robert A. DeVillar, Binbin Jiang and Jim Cummins
CHAPTER FIVE: Transforming Teacher Education for Social Equity in China: Heng Jiang
Overcoming inequality has become one of the most important goals of teacher education and educational reforms in general in China. Since the economic benefits of development have been realized more in urban areas than in rural areas, the Chinese government has spent the last decade introducing social and educational reforms in cities and rural areas in an effort to provide more opportunities for disadvantaged social groups. Supported by the Chinese government, teacher education programs have been engaged in preparing teachers to serve students in low-socioeconomic rural areas. In this chapter, the author examines the initiatives of these teacher education reforms in China, which are implemented throughout the pipeline of teacher education: pre-service teacher education, student teaching, new teacher recruitment, and in-service teacher professional development. Among these reform initiatives, four major approaches (free teacher education, Dinggang internship, special teaching positions [Tegang], and national professional development programs for rural teachers [Guopei])are introduced in this chapter to delineate how teacher education is transformed, both from top down and from bottom up, to prepare teachers over time and support them in learning to teach for social equity goals. This chapter argues that transformation in teachers’ beliefs about social equity (as well as its negative counterpart, inequity) should be central to the discussion of current teacher educational reforms. In light of the perspectives on teacher education for social justice, the challenges and possibilities of the mentioned initiatives linked to a social equity agenda are then discussed. ← 106 | 107 →
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