- New Center For Public Education research declares a "one-size-fits-all" approach to professional development dead, with a steady procession of new standards and curriculum demanding an ongoing approach, eSchool News reports.
- A better approach combines constantly evolving resources on- and offline, and necessitates recognition by a district that professional development is no longer something that can be wiped out in a day.
- Among the best practices suggested are collaborative learning, creative engagement, introducing goals that "feel important," and enabling online access to PD opportunities.
Just as "one-size-fits-all" is no longer good enough to meet the needs of students, so too is a new approach necessitated for educators. In fact, many of the same approaches now suggested for students are recommended for PD, and utilizing them can give educators firsthand experience with the models they're now being asked to employ.
For many districts, a personalized approach to teacher development has gained popularity. Thanks to new tools like micro-credentials, educators can now take charge of their growth by targeting the specific areas they know they want or need to strengthen as opposed to having a sole professional learning track dictated to them from the top-down. Allowing this approach offers the additional benefit of increasing a sense of teacher autonomy, and that empowerment can boost morale and enthusiasm that will ultimately be passed down the line to students.
Additionally, social networks like Twitter have offered expanded PD opportunities, with many developing their own digital professional learning communities and engaging in "PD in your PJs" via hashtags like #BFC530, also known as "The Breakfast Club."