Lifelong Learners: How Redefining Professional Learning Leads to Stronger Teachers and Improved Student Outcomes

Effective teaching is the most influential factor in improving student achievement. One of the best ways to ensure students are taught by effective educators is by providing high-quality professional learning that helps teachers continuously improve and perfect their craft to meet the needs of their students. For years, many states and districts have recognized the value of providing professional learning to their teachers, often offering and requiring participation in a variety of sessions or courses, but educators consistently report that these experiences provide little value and fail to impact their instruction.

In spring 2017, Educators for High Standards partnered with Learning Forward and Teach Plus, two of the leading educator advocacy organizations in the country, with the shared goal of highlighting and showcasing educators who are leading high-quality, aligned professional learning in their own schools or districts. They spent the summer talking with six educators from five states implementing innovative, aligned professional learning to better understand how they are designing and implementing learning experiences, and how it is impacting students and educators.

What they learned was not only instructive – showing how teachers crave high-quality, collaborative, teacher-led professional learning opportunities and are eager to implement new strategies in their classrooms – but also illustrated the importance of strong professional learning in the future of the teaching profession.

To read the report and see the tenets of redefined professional learning, see: