In this strand you will explore how to decide on what CPD to provide for maths in your school by considering what is most strategic, what your colleagues individual CPD needs are and how to find the best value for money that meets the budget.
When you have finished this strand you will:
- understand how to make strategic choices for the maths CPD provision
- know how to audit your colleagues individual CPD needs
- know how to monitor and evaluate the CPD provision
- understand how to manage the budget.
How do I decide what is most strategic?
Here is an extract from some research Leading staff development in primary mathematics, published in March 2006. The work is derived from the Leverhulme Numeracy Research Programme, a six-strand study which began in 1997 to investigate primary school mathematics teaching at a time of national and international concern about standards of children’s achievement in the subject. It coincided with the introduction, in England and Wales, of the National Numeracy Strategy (NNS) in 1999/2000.
Read the extract and see if you recognise any of the implications for practice as being relevant to you in your school.
You may find it useful to jot down your responses to this research and what you feel the issues are that it raises for your school in terms of significant CPD provision.
In 2006, ACME published a report Ensuring effective Continuing Professional Development for teachers of mathematics in primary schools. It contains a section How do schools decide on CPD priorities? which raises some interesting questions around how CPD priorities and what is most strategic may be decided.
Find a colleague, perhaps a member of the SLT, to discuss the ideas raised in this extract:
- to what extent does the CPD at your school have a narrow focus?
- how is the CPD focus at your school decided?
- to what extent is the CPD focus determined by the needs of the learners?
- what are the mechanisms at your school for ensuring that the CPD needs of teachers in mathematics, expressed in Performance Management interviews, are incorporated in your plan for CPD?
The Ofsted report The logical chain: continuing professional development in effective schools offers some thoughts around the impact of selecting particular types of CPD.
Two key findings are significant here:
- in the more effective schools, collaboration between staff supported their professional development but, generally, opportunities for teachers to improve their subject knowledge and subject-specific pedagogy were infrequent;
- staff benefitted where a wider range of different types of CPD was on offer. The very best schools selected the types of CPD most appropriate to the needs of the school and of individuals.
How do these findings relate to your school? Are there opportunities for teachers to improve their subject knowledge? Is there a wide range of CPD opportunities on offer?
The report contains a recommendation for schools to:
- provide well-targeted professional development in mathematics, particularly to improve teachers’ subject-specific pedagogy and the subject knowledge of non-specialist teachers of mathematics.
How applicable is this Ofsted recommendation to your school?
Find a time to discuss your findings with a member of the SLT team and see if you both agree on what is most strategic.
Do you need further information? If so decide how you are going to get hold of this.
Unpick the process together – what are the steps and key information that helps you decide what is most strategic?
Record your thoughts and ideas about what is most strategic in terms of maths CPD in your Personal Learning Space.