Standardising Practice: Learning to be teachers for the New Zealand nation

Maxine Stephenson
Vol 29, Number 2, p.37
This article examines the beginnings of nationally-based teacher education in New Zealand. It focuses on the shift from provincialism to centralisation of political and educational administration in the 1870s, and the formulation of national regulatory standards. Drawing on the work of Michel Foucault, teacher education is conceptualised as part of the disciplinary state educational apparatus, a key function of which was to consolidate political and cultural unity amongst the widely dispersed and culturally diverse population in the young colony. The article also examines the nature of the training experience, the rigid system of examination, licensing and certification, and its impact.