From the Answer Sheet
It’s no secret that a lot of professional development given to teachers is worthless. Teachers themselves have complained about it for years. U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan has repeatedly declared that PD is largely a waste of billions of dollars a year. A 2013 report by the National School Boards Association’s Center for Public Education noted that most teachers aren’t given the kind of professional development that would actually help them, and it called the most prevalent model of PD nothing short of “abysmal.” And early this month a study of 10,000 teachers by the nonprofit TNTP said that teacher workshops and training that cost taxpayers billions of dollars each year is largely a waste (although some critics took issue with the methodology of the study).
So, yes, a lot of PD for teachers is awful. But not all of it — and that’s the story that gets short shrift. Here’s a post by three educators about PD that does in fact work, written by Howard Gardner, Clayton Lewis, and Jim Reese. Read more>>