What do you think of when you see or hear “teacher professional development”? Do you envision lively discussions where everyone in the room is totally engaged and participating in the trainer’s presentation? Or perhaps you picture teachers sitting passively, flipping through pages of materials, and checking the time. Why is the latter the typical reaction? Because it describes the broad experience for most who have had to sit through hours of teacher professional development that was expected to motivate but lead to feelings of apathy and frustration due to time lost.
District and school administrators and instructional coordinators are primarily responsible for planning teacher professional development that advances teacher instructional practices, supports student learning and academic improvement, and aligns with state, district, and school educational objectives. As technology continues to make a greater impact on how teachers teach and how students learn, finding professional development that can lead to consistent strategy application and high engagement is essential. What are some key considerations for planning transformative professional development?
- The professional development services provider can customize content so that it is comprehensive and meaningful, making sessions agnostic.
- The services and content are accountable, with subject matter experts (SMEs) that can clearly communicate with your organization and provide tracking and ongoing support.
- Teachers have multiple opportunities to practice new skills, including those involving technology so that it is accessible.
To download an infographic on the full list of key considerations when planning a teacher PD, click 5 Key Considerations when Developing a Professional Development Program.
Of course, there are more considerations that can truly make the difference between a passive-and-forgotten professional development session and an active-and-apply professional learning experience. Organizations that collaborate with districts and schools to design and implement robust and engaging professional learning sessions that include ongoing teacher support are standouts for administrators. For example, EOS Education works with several large school districts such as Clayton County Public Schools (Clayton County, GA) and Phoenix Union High School District (Phoenix, AZ), creating customized services and sessions that help teachers maximize their use of technology and products, empowering them to move beyond basic skills to more dynamic and interactive uses technology and tools provided them.
Dr. Alex Leis, EOS Education, stated, “All of the support programs we offer (Clayton County Public Schools) teachers are aligned and complement one another, and all District digital resources are supported by our (Digital Learning Specialists) team. With this comprehensive partnership, teachers can choose to learn in their preferred modality to meet their individual needs. Because we provide a variety of training opportunities knowing that teachers’ comfort-levels with technology vary, each can receive the right level of support.” For more on the EOS Education and Clayton County Public Schools success story, read Clayton County Public Schools Benefits from Customized Professional Development.
EOS Education has a strong portfolio of professional development offerings that can be customized to fit the unique needs of a district or school. Training can be facilitated in-person, online, or a combination of both to better meet limited schedules and the demands of running an active district or school. To learn more about the award-winning EOS Education and explore their course offerings, click here – EOS Professional Development.