Archive of Professional Development

Should Professional Learning be Required?

on May 15th, 2012 in Blog by | No Comments

I recently observed a conference room full of superintendents sitting in complete silence as they pondered a challenging question, “Should teachers be required to participate in professional learning?” Richard Elmore posed this question, and after what seemed like an uncomfortable amount of wait-time, a superintendent responded in an uncertain voice,…

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Attendance as a Reform Agenda

on February 9th, 2012 in Blog by | No Comments

In the recent State of the Union address, President Obama challenged states to address the required age of school attendance. The President stated, “… when students don’t walk away from their education, more of them walk the stage to get their diploma.  When students are not allowed to drop out,…

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“We tried that, but…”

on November 7th, 2011 in Blog by | No Comments

I recently served as a process observer during a discussion about how to best support the central office leadership of a local school district as they planned school improvement efforts. The individuals who offered support to the district leaders commented on how frequently they heard these school leaders say, “We…

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Willing to Learn: Reactions to President Obama’s Back-to-School Speech from Finn

on October 5th, 2011 in Blog by | No Comments

Last week on September 28, 2011, President Obama addressed the students of the nation from Benjamin Bannecker Academic High School in Washington, D.C.  This was his third annual back-to-school address to the nation’s students and the second one I watched with my son, Finn.  Finn is in first grade and…

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How Adults Learn: What Do Reformers Need to Know?

on August 4th, 2011 in Blog by | No Comments

The West Wind Education Policy web site describes our work in the area of knowledge building and professional development as being based on theories of andragogy–or adult learning. The study of adult learning theory and experience in designing and supporting professional development for educators has taught us a lot about…

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