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Chew, A. M. K. E., & Chen, A. Y. (1999). Towards a framework for teacher development: The case of a Singapore mission school. In M. Waas (Ed.), Enhancing learning: Challenge of integrating thinking and information technology into the curriculum: Proceedings of the 12th Annual Conference of the Educational Research Association ( pp. 258-270). Singapore: Plaza Parkroyal Hotel.
This paper presents a conceptual framework for effective teacher development in Singapore schools. In particular, the role of mission schools, which have attempted in the past
to provide a well-defined moral and ethical basis for professional development and acculturation, is examined. One such mission school in Singapore was researched extensively to examine one type of school culture necessary for effective teacher development. The development of a teacher as a ‘moral agent’ pursuing the teaching profession as a ‘moral craft' in a ‘moral environment’ (Zeichner and Liston, 1987; Fullan and Hargreaves, 1992) is examined, with special attention given to the processes which serve to delimit as well as nurture personal growth. A dialectical socialisation process results from interaction between the unique Singaporean education system, the altruistic and moral ideals of the teacher, and the professional requirements of the vocation. This process is charted with reference to the development of teachers in the school. The framework is grounded mainly in North American studies related to classwork and personal growth, as well as the teachers’ moral purpose, and collaborative learning contexts in schools (e.g. Fullan, 1991; Massey and Chamberlin, 1990). It has been adapted with reference to Singapore’s unique conditions. Some recommendations regarding the development of a conducive culture and context for teacher development in Singapore are proposed.
This paper was published in the 1999 Proceedings of the ERA Annual Conference held at Plaza Parkroyal Hotel, Singapore from 23-25 November 1998
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