Continuing professional development is important in all industries, but for teachers it’s especially vital to ensure effectiveness in the classroom.
Not only that, it can increase teacher motivation and confidence and stand you in good stead when moving between schools – something supply teachers know all too well.
CPD for teachers helps keep you up to date with your chosen specialism, if you have one, as well as stay abreast of the latest approaches to teaching.
It’s easy to get swallowed up in the day-to-day busyness that being a teacher inevitably attracts; however, investing in CPD can put you head and shoulders above the rest, as well as making sure you offer the best possible teaching environment for the students in your classroom.
What is CPD and why should you do it?
So, what exactly is CPD training for teachers?
Put simply, continuing professional development is the practice of engaging in activities which develop your professional skills in a given industry.
It encourages teachers to take an active role in their career, enabling them to keep their qualifications up to date and even train in new areas.
It is of huge benefit to supply teachers because not only does it strengthen your professional credibility, it can also boost your confidence levels and allow you to be more creative in the classroom.
An additional benefit, and one great reason why schools and supply teaching agencies promote CPD, is it underpins high teaching standards and ensures everyone in a school is working towards the same goal.
Finally, CPD ensures teachers are compliant and up to date with the Department for Education and Ofsted’s requirements, which are continually evolving and changing.
What are examples of CPD for teachers?
Continuing professional development can take many different forms, but essentially it is recognised as anything you have done or are doing to progress or enhance your teaching knowledge and skills.
Some practical examples of CPD for teachers include:
• Training courses and/or workshops
• Studying for a new qualification
• Classroom observations and mentoring where less experienced teachers learn from more experienced teachers
• Peer group meetings and exchanges where teachers engage and learn from each other
• Attending exhibitions or conferences where you can learn from experts
• Online courses or workshops
The important thing to remember is that each teacher’s CPD will look different.
It is an autonomous journey – made with the support of your employer and any professional body you are associated with of course – but it should be right for you and the way you learn best.
How is CPD recorded and recognised?
Any teacher completing CPD should keep a record of their activities, usually in the form of a portfolio.
This should include your goals and objectives to enable you to reflect on any CPD you undertake, and make improvements or choose different activities in future.
If you are a member of a professional body this record is usually a requirement, primarily so you can see if you’re on track with your CPD for the year.
Doing this can help you plan ahead, plug any knowledge gaps and increase your capacity and commitment to learning.
In terms of how you record your CPD, every teacher will do this differently.
Some employers or professional bodies will have their own record templates but, if not, it is entirely up to you how you choose to record your CPD.
It may be that you choose to keep an electronic record in a Word or Excel document, but others prefer hard copy written notes which can be stored in a ring binder.
Whatever method you choose, it is wise to include the following basic elements in your CPD record:
• The date your activity took place
• What your learning objectives were and any reflections on this
• What subject area you covered
• What was the actual activity or learning method undertaken
• How many hours did you spend doing it
• Points, if awarded
• Learning outcomes
CPD for teachers with Exeter Supply Partnership
At Exeter Supply Partnership continuing professional development is incredibly important and something we offer for all our supply teachers
We believe it will not only strengthen and develop a teacher’s practice while working on supply by ensuring they have access to updated information, but also support their future career progression.
Following feedback from our teachers we organise courses that are fully funded to attend based on topics that they feel would be most beneficial to them. Our teachers also have access to courses that are organised by Exeter Consortium in partnership with the South West Institute for Teaching (SWIFT).
In addition, we have partnered with Free Courses England to offer access to a number of funded Level 2 accredited courses on a range of topics.
Finally, we have a CPD offering via The National College where teachers can access a huge variety of online courses and webinars.
To find out more about our CPD offering, simply contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 01392 927 171.
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