Employees have varying levels of appreciation when the topic of professional development comes up. Some are ecstatic about it because they view it as an opportunity to learn while others sigh with dread. However, the portion that dislikes the thought of staff development may not be looking at the bigger picture.
Professional development for teachers has myriads of benefits both to the teachers and the students. The primary goal of staff development is to learn and become exceptional team members. Today, professional development is a necessity for all teachers.
Each district or school sets the needed number of professional development hours within a specified period, for example, one year. Professional development is a form of education to improve the teacher’s skills as well as the class environment.
The board of education can also approve some classes as part of professional development. Here are some reasons why teacher professional development is essential.
It promotes the success of new teachers
Teachers spend most of their time developing new skills in response to the problems they face. However, new teachers have not had the opportunity to build their resources.
Professional development can help both new and experienced teachers advance the skills they require to feel confident in the classroom. Effective professional development helps in shaping the teachers’ careers.
It influences student learning
An exceptional teacher is better at teaching students effectively. When the chance of continuous learning is available to the teachers, they become better equipped. Professional development ensures that the right resources to improve the teacher’s skills are accessible.
Students who are performing below grade level or those who have learning needs can benefit as well. This is because professional development equips teachers with the right skills to handle such cases. Student attainment should be the prime aim of any teacher professional development activities.
Professional development allows teachers to focus as a team on the needs of their students. It helps teachers learn and solve solutions as a group to ensure every student achieves success.
It enhances a growth mindset
Thoughtful, intended teacher professional development activities improve student outcomes and enhance a growth mindset. Professional development allows teachers to become active participants in their learning. It also ensures that both teachers and students are eager to learn.
When the school offers learning and support for the teachers, it shows that the institution values the teachers’ work. Professional development for teachers makes the teaching experience better and more straightforward. This is because the teacher does not have to develop the necessary skills alone.
Here are some of the ways to make teacher professional development engaging and active:
Make it simple
Every teacher encounters challenges in the classroom and has to develop a set of skills to handle every issue. However, due to the cost, time, and efficiency, most professional development opportunities are too broad.
Sometimes, the activities can be irrelevant and time-wasting for the teachers. It would be best to empower teachers in delivering effective professional development.
Give teachers the freedom to select what they wish to learn. You can give them several options of courses to choose from and keep the topics simple.
Encourage teachers to get them invested
Some teachers may not be open to the idea. It’s critical to get them interested and engaged in the lessons, as it would be helpful to encourage your teachers by showing them the benefits of professional development.
Professional development for teachers is essential in any school. An effective professional development plan can mean a lot to the school and the success of the students. Organizations such as FuelEd can help equip teachers with the necessary skills.