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Leading Teachers' Professional Learning and Development for Outstanding Teaching

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In a 2016 special issue of the Wales Journal of Education focused on professional learning for teachers, the editors concluded:

If Wales is to create a successful and equitable education system in the future, it seems clear that one of the key factors in this will be ongoing work to improve the quality of teaching in our schools and professional learning has a critically important part to play in achieving this. (Egan and Grigg, 2016: 10)

The recent national mission articulated by the Welsh Government includes a central commitment to reforming and improving teachers' professional development from initial teacher education through to continuing professional learning, leadership development and schools as learning organisations (Education Wales/Welsh Government, 2017). To contribute to continuing dialogue and actions for school leadership and teachers' professional learning in Wales, this article explores the international research concerning the significance of professional learning to teacher development, the features of effective professional learning and how school leaders' leadership can support teachers' professional learning. Drawing on data from a large international study of professional learning in Canada (Campbell et al., 2016, 2017), we offer some discussion of what may be considerations for continuing developments in supporting school leaders' and teachers' professional learning in Wales. However, as Egan and Grigg (2016) also cautioned against, the intent of reviewing the international research literature is not to propose that existing policies should be 'borrowed' and applied unilaterally to Wales. As we have argued in our work in our home country of Canada, 'there is no one size fits all approach to professional learning for teachers and nor should there be' (Campbell et al., 2017: 41). Rather, the intention is to discuss the existing evidence concerning professional learning to inform conversations, debates and potential contextualisation, adaptation or rejection in the context of Wales nationally and for the diversity of schools, professionals, students and communities locally.
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Keywords: CANADA; LEADERSHIP; PROFESSIONAL LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT; TEACHING

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2018

More about this publication?
  • Previously published under the title University of Wales Journal of Education, this internationally-distributed annual journal offers an arena for disseminating education research from national and international perspectives. The journal explores a range of controversial arguments relating to education, including areas such as bilingualism, religion in education, well-being and the standards of literacy and numeracy. The contemporary drive for improved education standards, within Wales and internationally, provides a wealth of interdisciplinary research opportunities, and the journal aims to publish research reports relating to these current issues. The journal also includes a comprehensive reviews section.

    Mae'r cylchgrawn blynyddol hwn, a adwaenid gynt fel Cylchgrawn Addysg Prifysgol Cymru, yn trafod agweddau datganoledig ar addysg, ynghyd ag ymdrin ag addysg o safbwynt cenedlaethol a rhyngwladol. Wrth ymhel â materion cyfoes yn ymwneud ag addysg, mae'r drafodaeth yn amlinellu safbwyntiau dadleuol ynghylch dwyieithrwydd a chrefydd yn ogystal â safonau llythrennedd a rhifedd. Mae'r ymdrechion i wella safonau addysg yng Nghymru a thu hwnt yn esgor ar feysydd ymchwil newydd, a bwriad y cyfnodolyn yw cyhoeddi erthyglau cryno yn ymdrin â materion cyfredol o'r fath. Mae'r cyfnodolyn hefyd yn cynnwys adran adolygiadau.

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