Te aromihi pouako e puta ai ngā ihu o ngā ākonga Māori

Professional learning: What to use

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This section discusses two resources that school leaders may find helpful when planning professional learning with their staff.

INSTEP learning materials: Approaches to professional learning

The Inservice Teacher Education Practice (INSTEP) project’s learning materials were informed by the evidence that was emerging as the best evidence syntheses were developed. They include considerable information about the design of effective professional learning for educators. In particular, they emphasise the value of a collaborative process, in which each person is treated with respect at the same time as their knowledge, beliefs, and practices are valued and critiqued.

The chapter on “Conducting Inquiry” includes a section on “Selecting a collaborative process and activities to scaffold learning”. It describes five approaches, illustrating them with video clips from practice:

  • aligning beliefs with practice through problem-based methodology
  • learning from modelling by others
  • participating in role play
  • using a coach or mentor
  • working with a critical friend.

Teacher workplace survey

There is increasing evidence that the way schools are organised and run is directly linked to teacher retention and student learning. In response to this evidence, NZCER has developed a teacher workplace survey that school leaders can use to understand what their teachers think about their work, their working environment, and the climate for professional learning in the school. Teachers complete a confidential online survey in which they rate their level of satisfaction in relation to five areas:

  • physical working environment and resources
  • satisfaction with the school
  • school leadership
  • professional development
  • school organisation.

Results from the survey are grouped and presented in graphic form. Currently, reports are available at the individual school level, but as more schools complete the survey, NZCER will be able to generate comparative reports. School leaders can use the information to identify what aspects of their school’s working conditions teachers are happy with and what aspects need to be strengthened to help develop a culture of collaborative professional learning.

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