Do teachers still have autonomy in schools?

The new national curriculum and an increased culture surrounding high-stakes testing have caused many beginning teachers to question whether they will still have autonomy in their classrooms. Studies have shown that the vast majority of teachers join the profession for intrinsic reasons, therefore this topic has incredible importance.

At PRAC-E Symposium III, a school principal detailed his views about teacher autonomy and efficacy in his school. To hear the current ‘state of the nation’, straight from the horse’s mouth, enjoy our video and podcast below!


  • Schools usually have an overarching pedagogical approach, e.g. the gradual release of responsibility.
  • This particular school did not prescribe how different teachers implemented that approach. Different teachers have different students, with countless variables. It is a “nonsense” to micromanage a specific prescription.
  • It is important that staff are collegial and share their approaches. Frameworks are important, but how they are implemented are the teachers’ call.
  • Accountability is also important. You should be able to justify your pedagogical approach.
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