Tag Archives: Collaborative

Professional Learning: Never been better?⤴

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Through the Into Headship programme, I was fortunate enough to listen to Gayle Gorman at one of our national conferences. She spoke passionately about taking the politics out of education in what can be seen in her quote below.

Move from a politically driven to a professionally led system.

Gayle Gorman, HMIe Chief Inspector, Education Scotland (April 2018)

It made me consider the importance and value of professional learning and the huge potential we have already within our education system. And made me reflect on there never has been a better time in Scottish education for professional learning.

Professional learning is at the heart of the GTCS Standards, enshrined in How Good is Our School? 4 and a key feature of professional practice across Scotland.

National Model for Professional Learning

In light of our recent move to the online world, it is now time to reflect on the professional learning opportunities available to all in Scottish education and beyond. Arguably, the way in which we engage with our learning will change as a result of organisations, charities, Education Scotland and local authorities adapting to this new world. Will we ever attend a course in person again? Probably. However, we may experience a wider range of opportunities as people are now comfortable with attending online lectures and conferences. It may in fact open up more opportunities where previously people were unable to attend.

With a five yearly focus on Professional Update and an annual review process encouraging all teachers to reflect on their learning, I do feel like we are in a good position. However, is it tokenism and does this help with our drive for high quality learning and teaching? That is a question teachers will need to reflect upon individually, however I think it does and believe that high quality PRDs link in with school improvement which in turn impacts on pupils learning.

I would argue that there is an increasing shift away from attending a course. We now have podcasts and blogs being developed at pace right across the education system. There are also pop events and conference organised by and for teachers. It is encouraging to see this organic movement but does beg the question what the formal organisations responsible for the delivery of professional learning are doing about it. For example, the recent change to the Scottish learning festival which will now be organised by the professional learning and leadership directorate instead of the wider education Scotland. And what about the role of local authorities? Teachers are professionals and are more than skilled and capable to collaborate themselves however are they being failed by the wider formal structures which should be providing a service? I’ll let you comment on that!

The focus on leadership development has also been a key focus, and remains so. With the development of the framework for leadership and the many online learning modules created to support the different categories:

Professional learning

School leadership

System leadership

Middle leadership

Teacher leaderhsip

I do think we are now at a stage where our professional learning opportunities are excellent in terms of the choice and breadth, however we do now need to consider the depth and quality of professional learning. Perhaps this is where we need to consider again a masters level approach so that each professional learning engagement is supported by a university and contributes towards something like a qualification. This would help bring coherence to our overloaded system and also support the idea of high quality in depth learning.

Lastly, we need to recognise the potential knowledge and experience within our schools, universities and local authorities as it currently stands. Each school could have specialisms which they could share their experiences in which may foster greater collaboration. We need to reduce our reliance on courses which are paid for. The reason for this is that as budgets tighten then fewer people can benefit from this and I believe we don’t always have the quality when CPD companies churn out another course with little consideration for the person attending. If we had a greater collaborative culture across schools where we could regularly share in our own in-house developed programmes, this would reduce the competition aspect within education.

Therefore, I believe we have many opportunities in the years ahead and that there has never been a better time to engage in professional learning in Scottish education.

I’ll leave you with a few questions:

1. What is needed to ensure every teacher values their own learning just as much as the learning of the young people?

2. How do we ensure effective collaboration to build upon the organic movement already taking place? Do we need organisations like Education Scotland and local authorities to fulfil the role of professional learning or is this up to individuals?

Please feel free to comment underneath the post on twitter.

Episode 23 – Digital Learning⤴

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In Episode 23 of EduBlether we discuss Digital Learning. We think about Pedagogy, the SAMR model, equity, access, professional learning and so much more. Let us know your feedback on Twitter @edublether

What is your experience of Digital Learning been? Why do you think we have not made the advancements in Digital Learning that we could have done up until now? What will happen to Digital LEarning when we return to ‘normal’? Let us know what you think.

Listen: https://soundcloud.com/edublether/episode-23-digital-learning

EduBlether John Catt Educational Series⤴

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John Catt Educational are a leading publisher of professional development books for educators around the world. Check out their titles at JohnCatt.com


We have teamed up with John Catt Educational to bring you a series of EduBlethers with a select group of authors from John Catt Educational.

We are in the middle of securing dates and will publish them below.

July

An EduBlether with Haili Hughes – Preserving Positivity

Episode 13 – Professional Learning⤴

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Listen to this episode on spotify, apple podcast, soundcloud or any other podcasting app. You can also click on the picture above to listen to this episode.

Episode 9 – Back to School⤴

from @ edublether.wordpress.com

In this episode our Main Feature is Back to School, where we discuss how things change over the summer and what it is important to focus on in those first weeks back. We also have the usual features: in the news, we recommend and inspired by. Please check out edublether.wordpress.com and rate us on iTunes.

Listen here: https://soundcloud.com/edublether/episode-9-back-to-school

Episode 8 – Scottish education’s PRD⤴

from @ edublether.wordpress.com

In this episode, we carry out Scottish education’s PRD to analyse: what’s going well? What has been challenging? What are the next steps? And what support is needed in order to get there? We also have our usual features of #InTheNews #WeRecommend and #InspiredBy. We have been inspired by #PortyLF and @SirJJones #MagicWeavingBusiness and we recommend @Mattforde and @ThePoliticalParty podcast.

Listen here: https://soundcloud.com/edublether/episode-8-scottish-educations-prd

Episode 7 – Unlocking Leadership Potential⤴

from @ edublether.wordpress.com

In this episode of EduBlether, we interview @joycematthews_ about Unlocking Leadership Potential. We also have our usual features: in the news, we recommend and inspired by. Please check out edublether.wordpress.com and rate us on iTunes.

Listen on iTunes or via soundcloud.

Sing alang tae the langest sang!⤴

from @ Glowing Posts

This is a lovely idea, classes are invited to join in with writing verses for classic Scots children’s song, The World Must Be Coming To An End.

Classes can send in their verses via email or teachgers can get an account and post to the blog themselves. Organised by Mr M (@athole) on Twitter

Sing alang tae the langest sang!

 

TES Resource⤴

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“Hello, Just following up on the last message. We would love to hear back from you to see whether you are interested in the £50 reward for uploading…”

 

The TES came a calling. Offering cash incentives.

 

“£50 reward for uploading 3 premium teaching resources to our website. “

 

I had a look.

 

What is a premium resource? It’s a resource on the TES site that you pay for.

 

I have enough problems remembering my login for the TES site.

 

I had a read of this post again. It’s about why i teach. I’ve done it for a while now. I still love it. It’s about the changing, the learning, the everyday being new, the unlocking of potential. It’s not about the money.

 

I am more than happy to share any knowledge, resources I have with anyone. For free. Get in touch and I’ll send you what I can.

 

I feel that the sharing of ideas, resources, skills and knowledge is a key part of teaching. It’s how we are going to improve our education system, our curriculum. It’s how we are going to prepare our young people for the future.

 

It’s also what we ask the children in our care to do when we plan group work.

 

As well as an ethical issue in getting paid for sharing my resources, there’s a further issue.

 

If I make a resource on my council computer, in my council lit, council heated classroom and maybe print out a few test copies on the council maintained printer, is it fully my resource to charge for?

 

If I use the knowledge that I have developed through the inspiring, knowledgeable teachers I have worked with, is it fully my resource to charge for?

 

If I use an idea that I have seen on someone else’s resource, even if I have adapted it, is it fully my resource to charge for?

 

I am lucky.  I work, and have worked, with some wonderfully knowledgeable, inspiring people. I learn loads from them. I see how they do things, I improve my practice, I incorporate their ideas and I steal a copy of their resources from them and use them with my class. Should I offer them money when I do this?

 

Sharing. It’s a fundamental part of education, it’s how we personally improve and it’s how we are going to improve the lives of our young people.

Hopefully I do it.

And it’s useful.

And I do it for free.