Colleague Anthony Rebora, over at Education Week’s Teacher Magazine, is live-blogging the National Staff Development Council’s annual conference. He has a really great post up about the definition of professional development in the No Child Left Behind law.
Be sure to check it out, because although this may seem wonky, it is probably going to raise its head during the reauthorization process.
Lawmakers tried to put a stop to poor quality “one-shot workshops” for teachers almost a decade ago when they wrote the NCLB law. The professional development funded through NCLB’s Title I, Title II, and right on down the line is supposed to align to the definition in the law, which explicitly eschews one-day workshops. (It’s hard to say whether or not the definition had much effect. I suspect not, since this part of the law was not enforced, nor has there been good tracking of PD efforts by states or districts.)
NSCD has some ideas on how to improve the definition. Once you’ve read Anthony’s post, leave a comment and let us know whether you think this could help matters.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Teacher Beat blog.