"We know that teachers learn best from other professsionals and that an 'open classroom' culture is vital: observing teaching and and being observed, having the opportunity to plan, prepare, reflect and teach with other teachers. Too little teacher training takes place on the job, and too much professional development involves compliance with bureaucratic initiatives rather than working with other teachers to develop effective practice"
The Importance of Teaching, 2010
Notre Dame's vision for Continuing Professional Development:
"A culture of allies that support each other's professional development, sharing the belief that we are all life-long learners, and empowering each other as resilient professionals resulting in better outcomes for students"
Our CPD aims:
1. To maintain a focus on pupil outcomes in all that we do;
2. To base changes to our practice on robust evidence and expertise;
3. To nurture effective collaboration between colleagues in order to share best practice, whilst respecting that there are many styles of teaching;
4. To allow staff time to effectively embed enhancements to their practice, through sutained programmes of CPD.
Our CPD process:
Our CPD is integrated with our Performance Management (PM) and Quality Assurance (QA) processes, such that we respond to individual training and development needs as well as the aims of the school overall.
Each year, evidence from QA across the school is used to develop a menu of PM objectives. Teachers choose the most appropriate objective during their annual PM review. QA and school aims are also referred to in developing a calendar of CPD twilight sessions which run every Monday after school. Teachers use directed time (at least 10 hours) to work towards their selected PM objectives as follows:
- They attend Teaching and Learning Group meetings. T&L groups are formed of staff with common PM objectives. During each meeting, group members discuss their objective, and then considers a range of researched, evidenced techniques and strategies. Each individual then action plans how to apply what they have learnt to their classroom practice, and defines the evidence that would demonstrate success by pre-populating a peer observation form.
- They Peer observe one another. Within T&L groups pairs of staff are formed. These pairs observe one another in between each T&L group meeting, looking for evidence as defined by the observee.
- They evaluate with one another. Pairs meet following peer observing each other to discuss what has been observed, evaluating their action plans before their T&L group next meets.
- They additionally attend internal (Monday night) or external CPD events as required. Staff are welcome to attend as many internal CPD events as they wish. They must seek approval for external CPD events.
Our staff keep a record of all CPD in a folder called a CPD Portfolio, including notes and resources for T&L group meetings; action plans; peer observation records; peer evaluation minutes. The related forms can be downloaded here:
All members of staff, including those who work to research and provide resources for T&L group meetings, are encouraged to share latest T&L developments. Click to visit the NDHS Blog spot.