Back in 2012, changes in workforce regulations meant that teachers were no longer required to declare their Continuing Professional Development (CPD) each year.
At the time, this was considered great by many teachers who had found the necessary form filling to be onerous and time consuming.
However, CPD is a good way to stay up to date and often inspires you to improve the way you work. Even though it’s no longer legally required, it’s still considered good practice for a teacher to record each event of CPD as it occurs, irrespective of whether they work on a full-time, part-time or supply basis.
So what exactly is CPD?
CPD exists to ensure that “an individual continues to enhance their skills and abilities once they have formally qualified.”
In simple terms, CPD is your unique development story. It’s often regarded by teachers as something that has to be done ‘above and beyond’ their normal workload but generally this isn’t the case.
In fact, if you’re a teacher, you probably undertake a significant amount of CPD each day without even realising it. CPD can not only significantly increase your knowledge within your sector, but is also a desirable attribute on a CV should you want to find a new job.
Three easy ways to contribute to your CPD
1.Mentor a new colleague
According to the National College for Teaching and Leadership, “effective mentoring and coaching is key to professional development.
Research has shown that mentoring programmes can lead to a number of positive outcomes at both an individual and organisational level including: better problem solving skills, improved clarity of thinking, better communication and relationships, more positive attitudes towards professional and career development, a culture of professionalism and recognition, and a culture of high aspirations.
With these goals in mind, why not offer to get involved in your school’s mentoring programme? If there isn’t a programme in place, volunteer to research how one could be implemented.
2.Regularly read the latest journal articles - and share the learnings
To stay ahead in any sector, it's important to keep up with the constant flow of new research. Education is no exception and it’s easy for teachers to access quality journals that provide invaluable new ideas for the classroom.
There are hundreds of educational journals, many of them free and most of them online.. Here are some of our recommendations:
If you find an article or piece of published research interesting, the chances are that your colleagues will too so use a suitable forum to share your learnings or, if there isn't one, be instrumental in establishing one - either at a departmental or whole-school level.
3.Conduct some research and present your findings
Have you ever found yourself wondering “why does that happen?” in relation to behavior in the classroom? Have you noticed that standard, work or concentration is affected in certain situations? Then why not carry out and record your own cause and effect analysis in an attempt to understand why? You may discover something amazing.
Sharing research that gets to the heart of what goes on in the classroom is invaluable, particularly if the findings are transferable to other classrooms. And once you've shared and discussed your findings with colleagues, you'll know your subject matter well enough to present to a wider audience.
Presenting at an education conference is a great way to gain kudos, both for you and your school. First you'll need to submit a proposal - most conference websites will provide clear instructions and a deadline for submissions.
We hope that after reading this you're inspired to think about your CPD.
If you would like more information about your CPD opportunities and how they can benefit your job search, or would like to have a confidential discussion about your situation, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or on 020 3319 3235.