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Alison Barrett - CPD: What’s the Starting Point for Change?

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How can we become champions for change in challenging teaching contexts?

A strong and rapidly growing global evidence base for what makes effective Continuing Professional Development (CPD) provides us with invaluable guidance as to how we can improve provision and support teachers and teacher educators. Recent studies (see links below) point to the importance of a focus on student learning outcomes, external challenge and support, mentoring and coaching, school leadership firmly engaged in academic learning and progress, ongoing and sustained CPD and a strong focus on subject matter knowledge as well as teaching competence. This evidence has recently contributed to the establishment of a new standard for teachers’ professional development that could bring significant change in the way CPD is conceptualised and implemented in England. It has also informed the design of the CPD frameworks for teachers and teacher educators which sit at the heart of our new Teaching for Success approach.

But what’s the starting point for change for individuals working within the reality of large scale, under-resourced, highly controlled and linguistically diverse education systems in many developing contexts around the world? In this session we consider the potential for individual actors within the education system to be CPD change champions, using the evidence and tools at their disposal to both implement and advocate changes that are practical and achievable considering their immediate constraints. We also explore how frameworks have the potential not to restrict and control teacher development, but to empower them to change.

About the speaker:

Alison Barrett MBE is the Global Head of the British Council’s English for Education Systems programmes, which aim to improve the quality of English language teaching, learning and assessment worldwide through collaboratively designed capacity building programmes, consultancy services provided by UK experts or providing access to research and expertise through events and publications. Now based in Dubai, Alison previously spent over two decades working as an English teacher, teacher educator, academic manager and programme manager in East and South Asia. Alison has an MA in TESOL from the Institute of Education, University of London and was recently awarded an MBE for services to the teaching and learning of English in India.

Watch Alison's talk below