Appendix 1: Professional development initiatives we reviewed

Ministry of Education: Supporting professional development for teachers.
Key strategic aspirations as noted in Ministry documentation Other information from Ministry documentation
Assess to Learn
Improve student learning and achievement.

Create shifts in teachers' assessment knowledge and practice.

Develop coherence between assessment processes, practices, and systems so that they promote better learning.

Develop schools as learning communities to encourage cultures of continuous school improvement.

Enhance professional learning communities regionally and nationally.
The initiative is delivered by three-year contracts with eight providers.
Extending High Standards Across Schools (EHSAS)
Strengthen professional learning communities of schools and increase collaboration.

Improve student outcomes.

Improve teaching quality.

Develop a knowledge base of models of effectiveness and examples of practices and processes that can be used to enhance school performance.

Increase opportunities for teachers to work with colleagues to inquire into and strengthen their professional knowledge and practice.
The principles behind EHSAS are to raise student achievement by promoting excellence in the school system and supporting high standards.

The objective of EHSAS is to improve student outcomes by assisting schools to further develop effective processes and practices with other schools. A key element of this initiative will be schools working collaboratively to extend their practice.

By identifying processes and practices currently operating in schools and which are having a significant impact on student achievement, and assisting schools to work collaboratively with others, this initiative has the potential to bring about significant system level change.
In-Service Teacher Education Practice Project (INSTEP)
Explore and develop effective approaches for the professional learning of in-service teacher educators.

Strengthen and promote evidence-based in-service teacher education practice.

Support professional leadership and ongoing improvement within the in-service teacher education sector.
INSTEP is a research and development project about the learning and practice of advisers, facilitators, resource teachers, and other in-service teacher educators.
Literacy Professional Development Project
Evidence of improved student achievement.

Evidence of improved teacher content knowledge.

Evidence of improved transfer of understanding of literacy pedagogy to practice.

Evidence of professional learning communities.
Literacy Professional Development Project is one part of the Ministry of Education's Literacy Strategy. The project is offered to schools with students in Years 1-6 and/or Years 7-8 and provides them with in-depth school-wide professional development in literacy. Schools can choose to focus on either reading comprehension or writing.

Facilitators work with the literacy leaders, principals, and teachers of the participating schools, supporting them to take an enquiry- and evidence-based approach to increasing the effectiveness of the literacy practices in their school.
National Pilot Programme for Aspiring Principals
Leading learning is the key priority. This involves leadership which:
  • improves learning outcomes for all students, with a particular focus on Māori;
  • creates the vision and conditions for effective teaching and learning; and
  • builds and sustains schools as learning communities.
A national pilot programme for aspiring principals will run during 2008. The pilot is a programme of professional learning designed to prepare aspirants for principalship in a range of New Zealand schools.

To be considered for selection, applicants must provide evidence of:
  • successful teaching practice;
  • recent professional learning;
  • relationships with students, colleagues, and community;
  • leading and/or being part of a team; and
  • a personal commitment to leading learning.
Principals' Development Planning Centre
To develop educational leadership capability in principals. The Principals' Development Planning Centre is a professional development initiative for principals of New Zealand schools with three or more years' experience.

While at the Centre, participating principals:
  • experience a range of activities and exercises that imitate real-life situations they face in a leadership role;
  • have the opportunity to reflect and evaluate their current leadership practices in a safe and supportive environment;
  • receive intensive one-on-one support from a facilitator who, where possible, is matched to their circumstances;
  • work through a “strengths and needs” analysis as part of building a professional development plan; and
  • have the opportunity to build supportive relationships with other participating principals.
Schooling Improvement
Schooling Improvement is an evidence-based practice aimed at raising student achievement, particularly that of Māori and Pasifika students. These are projects that aim to improve the capability of schools and clusters and their responsiveness to the needs of their communities. Most projects are developed in the context of a business case. Teacher professional development is an aspect of the projects. This occurs through a set of planned interventions which to date, have focused mainly on literacy and numeracy. These interventions have primarily focused on effective classroom practice as opposed to other external variables. Schooling Improvement predominantly works with clusters of schools rather than individual schools.
School Support Services
The School Support Services contracts are the main vehicle that the Ministry of Education uses for the provision of centrally-funded and managed professional learning programmes. The provision of professional learning programmes for principals and teachers to meet government priorities as well as to meet regional needs continues to be a key focus of the services purchased through the School Support Services contracts.
Teachers Refresher Course Committee (TRCC)
The TRCC has identified the following key strategic targets for the next three years. The TRCC will:
  • be a professional, representative and highly effective committee;
  • be nationally recognised as a quality professional development provider with strong links to relevant educational groups;
  • meet its Treaty of Waitangi responsibilities in all aspects of the organisation's activities;
  • be appropriately resourced to ensure sound financial, asset and personnel management; and
  • provide innovative, relevant and timely courses for all sectors in education.
The TRCC exists to:
  • improve the quality of teaching and learning in New Zealand education;
  • provide quality professional development for all New Zealand educators;
  • deliver national courses "for teachers by teachers"; and
  • take account of research, and model best practice in education, in course planning.
Te Hiringa i te Mahara
Te Hiringa i te Mahara aims to empower Māori secondary school teachers, particularly teachers of te reo Māori:
  • to think about their situation differently, and to respond in their own culturally and professionally powerful way; and
  • to provide them with classroom and management resources, professional development programmes, and enhanced access to networks.
Te Hiringa is about "the power of the mind" – and about the attributes that a Māori teacher brings to the practice of their profession.
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