Teacher professionalism: why are we still talking about it?

Judyth Sachs*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    221 Citations (Scopus)


    It is now more than 10 years after the publication of the monograph, The Activist Teaching Profession, which, at the time, could be described as a call to action for the teaching profession. I reflect here on how far has the profession progressed in responding to that call to action. The idea of a 'call to action' could be seen to born out of industrial rather than professional discourses: 10 years ago different factors were shaping teachers' professional practice and identity and a call to action was a metaphor and a strategy to mobilize teachers. In this paper, I identify the factors that are still influencing and shaping the teaching profession and argue that different times require different responses and that current thinking and debates around teacher professionalism circulate around professional learning. In this paper, I argue that the time for an industrial approach to the teaching profession has passed. I make the case for systems, schools and teachers to be more research active with teachers' practices validated and supported through research.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)413-425
    Number of pages13
    JournalTeachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 18 May 2016


    • teacher activism
    • teacher continuing professional development
    • Teacher professionalism
    • teacher standards


    Dive into the research topics of 'Teacher professionalism: why are we still talking about it?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this