Human Resource Issues in Education: A Literature Review

Publication Details

This review examines different components of a human resource strategy for education. These include teacher recruitment and pre-service training, hiring and induction, professional development, and standards and assessments for teachers and principals. The international literature was examined and key findings reported. The learning profession is put at the centre of the model developed by the researchers.

Author(s): Michael Fullan, Blair Mascall, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto. Report prepared for the Ministry of Education.

Date Published: April 2000

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Human resource issues have come to be seen as central to every policy initiative in education around the world. While the "hot" issues in education invariably focus on student achievement, funding for education, and issues of access and quality, the factors which concern the recruitment, preparation, hiring, assessment and professional development of the workforce are key to understanding the issues themselves.

Yet it is only in the last decade that education systems have been considering the totality of the issues. For some time, there has been research and discussion about individual components — such as professional development — but it is during the 1990s that research and policy analysts have been examining how the components fit together: examining, in fact, a 'human resource strategy' for the teaching profession. Our review of the recent literature has been undertaken in that context. While we examine the various component parts of a human resource strategy, it is the approach to the whole system that provides the richest research, and leads to the most effective practice. In this introduction, we describe our framework, our methodology, and provide a general commentary on the direction of the findings in this review. The remaining sections of this report provide details on the literature we have reviewed under the headings of the various component parts.

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