Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Professional Develpment ... Optional?

I am currently working on a professional development plan to prepare our faculty for a 1:1 laptop program to be rolled out in the 09-10 school year. Next school year each month we are planning on having one 3 hour workshop. Then to supplement the workshop we are planning on having smaller sessions on a weekly basis either before or after school. The problem is that some in our school want these smaller sessions to be optional with a monetary incentive for attendance. It is of my opinion that if these sessions are not required then teacher attendance is going to be very low, even with the incentive.

The better alternative would be to make the sessions mandatory and then add an incentive for using what they have learned in the classroom. To document the use of the technology they could post the lesson plan to a school wiki, and provide examples of student work. I also think if we want to give them choices, then offer 4-6 different sessions a month and make them pick 3 or 4 of them to attend.

Teachers have enough on their plate, I know I am one, but I also know teachers are not going to come to an "optional" professional development session for a small bonus on their paycheck.

photo by edublogger on flickr.