Dialogue Group

March 2018

CDP Monday – An Evaluative Approach

As we are now just over half-way through the academic year it seems appropriate to take some time to start evaluating our CPD approach this year.

I go back to the aims I set out at the start of the year and I can already see how we have been able to fulfil them. I say fulfil because they are happening but not achieved, and this is not the type of thing you tick off and complete.

Our first aim - a focus on responsive teaching - is not new but possibly has a renewed vigour because of the new format we have to discuss it. The clarity we have on ‘responsive teaching’, ‘formative assessment’, ‘assessment for learning’, call it what you will, has been quite liberating.

Another aim was to enable staff to take time to unpick a particular technique they use regularly and consider why it works. Our group leads have demonstrated this and now every session another member of the group has taken the lead with feedback. This active participation of teachers taking the time to reflect on their practice and share with others is what the Teacher Learning communities is all about and I would argue cannot be replicated in any other type of CPD. 

Through discussion with our group leads it is clear to see that the common themes of theory, evidence, examples and what next? are at the forefront of each meeting. Yet when looking at the detail of the conversations the groups have all taken their individual approach and reflect the reading and the papers the group leads have selected. This again highlights a strength of this approach meeting the needs of individual teachers and subjects to maximise the use of CPD time.

So in the short term I see this as a success. In the long term my judgement would also be it is a success, but as we know long-term success must be rooted in evidence and that is what we look to next - can we see how this has had an impact on student learning? A more difficult question to answer, but that should make it all the more worthwhile.

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