Continuous Professional Development

Because the world that teachers are preparing young people to enter is changing so rapidly, and because the teaching skills required are evolving likewise, no initial course of teacher education can be sufficient to prepare a teacher for a career of 30 or 40 years. Continuous Professional Development (CPD) is the process by which teachers (like other professionals) reflect upon their competences, maintain them up to date, and develop them further.

The extent to which education authorities support this process varies, as does the effectiveness of the different approaches. A growing research base suggests that to be most effective, CPD activities should:

    be spread over time
    be collaborative
    use active learning
    be delivered to groups of teachers
    include periods of practice, coaching, and follow-up
    promote reflective practice
    encourage experimentation, and
    respond to teachers' needs.