What is the ambition for continuing professional development for your teachers?
Defining professional development for teachers and leaders in education is an essential ingredient in the shaping of the vision for excellence and improvement in any school or college. The emphasis on the three words intent, implementation and impact are as relevant for planning and delivering high quality CPD as they are for ensuring the curriculum has breadth depth and balance for all learners. CPD for teachers and all educators must have relevance, it must be challenging and it must make a difference to the individual, the team they work for and the school or college as a whole.
Every member of a school or college should have an entitlement to engage in a process of continuous professional learning that supports them in their ability to interpret their part in implementing the curriculum and creating high quality outcomes for all. The vision and intent for excellence is much more likely to be realised if a clear pathway for professional development is woven through the planning process, celebrates individual strengths, links to specific areas for development and creates the potential for the sharing and cascading of the learning through positive professional and meaningful dialogue.
Planning backwards to define what success will look like
Measuring impact is an essential element of effective leadership. Clearly defined strategies for what that impact will look like requires a focus on how the vision or intent turns into a strategy for implementation where all staff involved in the process know the part they will play in achieving it. Start by planning backwards and asking these questions,
What will success look like?Taken from an activity that is part of Learning Cultures’ Team Building and Coaching for Subject Leaders course
How will we know we have achieved what we set out to achieve?
How can we empower everyone across the organisation to be an integral part of the vision?
How do we build expertise that will achieve the impact we expect?
How will we weave continuing professional development into our plan for success?
Take the time to have essential conversations with the senior leadership team and with subject and middle leaders to answer the above questions. Draw a consensus as to what success will look like and then translate that into a focus on implementing a CPD strategy that will deliver high quality outcomes for the curriculum, for leadership, for behaviour and for the well-being of all.
How do you create sustainable and cost effective professional development pathways that have an impact on learning and achievement?
The above question is essential in deciding how to ensure professional development is at the heart of your vision for ongoing continuous improvement, curriculum cohesion and a harmonious and happy organisation. The first issue is ensuring that CPD is sustainable. One off training won’t do.
Sustainability is one of the most important elements in developing Learning Cultures‘ training and development programmes and courses. Any professional development activity must be designed so that the individual recipient can take back their learning and cascade it to others. We do this by designing resources and activities that are built for sharing, for use by teams and if preferred and relevant by the whole school.
The second most important element is the issue of ensuring CPD is cost effective and does impact on learning and achievement for the individual recipient, their team and the whole school. Designing powerful resources means that one person can attend or maybe two and then the content of the training can be replicated widely. Our new approach to delivering our suite of online webinars will give all those who attend a wealth of materials, research to draw on and activities to use. We have changed the process so that the course is broken down into three elements. The cost remains the same.
- pre-reading and an activity to set the scene
- a three hour face to face online webinar with an expert trainer who will give participants a deep dive into the subject focus, whether it is linked to:-
Curriculum, Teaching & Learning
Coaching in Education
Leadership and Quality
- post-course activities to take away and an animated version of the powerpoint from the face-to-face session along with a set of resources and materials
Why we advocate coaching as the most powerful tool in the CPD box?
Coaching is at the heart of building a learning culture where everyone is part of the process of continuing professional development and where the sharing and cascading of good and best practice is as much a part of CPD as any training course will ever be. We know that our webinars and our offsite events provide the nuts and bolts of what all educators need to know in relation to their role in implementing the school or college vision. It is coaching, however, that then builds the capacity for professional conversations to take place that lead to deep learning and change and challenge that will ensure high quality outcomes and excellent results.
Coaching is about empowering others to accept challenge, to take risks and find their own solutions. Coaching is about building strong teams and fostering a culture of trust where everyone works together through positive interactions and a collective belief that learning is at the heart of every decision. Where leaders learn how to use coaching as part of how they lead, they empower others to take on responsibility, know their strengths and achieve challenging goals.
Coaching allows those with subject and middle leadership responsibility to motivate and galvanise strong teams who work collaboratively to achieve their common objectives. Teaching and coaching use similar skills to support learners towards achieving their potential. Where teachers use their coaching skills there is a noticeable and tangible difference in the behaviour, self-esteem and achievement of their pupils. Build coaching into your vision for a sustainable and cost-effective CPD strategy and your journey towards excellence is assured.
Have a look at our coaching courses here.
Find out more about our Coaching Certification programme and start your own journey towards being an education coach.
We have a new Leadership Coaching Programme coming soon. Register your interest here.