Professional learning should be relevant to the varying needs of each teacher and principal, adapting as those needs change. Teachers and principals should be empowered to acquire and construct new knowledge as professional learners, then apply that knowledge to solve complex problems they face in and around the classroom.
Often, as a result of a mostly one-size-fits-all PD approach, teacher and principal needs are not met. As a result, their motivation to learn professionally is whittled away. This is costly to the teacher, school, and ultimately students and the wider community. Across developed countries, between 35 and 55% of teachers leave the profession within 5 years. The cost of such wide-scale professional dislocation is enormous. So how can schools and colleges with tens or hundred of teachers with varying professional needs practically personalize professional learning?
mme moe is a framework and functionality based on a philosophy for effective growth in teaching. It provides teachers and principals access to personalized and on-demand avenues to personal and professional growth.
When implemented with purpose and in a heutogogically sound way, mme moe will not only support, but greatly enhance learning for all teachers and principals. The personalized learning that results represents a shift from the content to the person as a means to facilitate teacher and principal agency and autonomy in their learning.
A more personalized approach to professional learning increases relevance and value for teachers and principals. This encourages deeper reflection on practice, stronger collegiality and better outcomes for students. We expect students' learning experiences to be personalized, we should expect no less for teachers who model learning for their students.
How much professional development have you done? How many hours? What has been the cost of this to you, to your school, or to your school system?
But how much of it has actually been developing you? A lot of PD hours are spent rolling out new institutional initiatives, dealing with school logistics, or presenting one-time sessions that may or may not be put to use by any given teacher. Teacher professional learning should, however, result in students learning better; students knowing know they can learn and wanting to learn more. Are you getting that result?
Teacher improvement is a very personal and enigmatic concept. One would have thought with all the completed professional learning in literacy and numeracy that teachers have undergone, that student scores on high-stakes testing would be soaring. But they aren’t. So there is clearly something wrong with either the testing or the professional learning teachers do, or more likely, both.
At mme moe, we don’t have an agenda to fix high stakes testing, but we do have a few ideas! We are, however, working to significantly improve focus and access for teachers to the professional learning they need.
Teachers and schools should have clear evidence that all teachers have truly grown as practitioners because of the professional learning they undertake, and that they have a mindset of continuous growth, not just that they attended for the requisite number of hours. Just as attending every day of the Wimbledon tennis tournament does not make you a tennis pro, simply attending professional development does not necessarily get the job done.
Teachers should no longer have to undergo professional development sessions where they all do the same thing. Teachers need to have individualized development goals. If all teachers improved at one small aspect, then the whole teaching project improves a lot, and then is ready for the next round of
‘crowd improvement'. When provided this agency - more ownership over their own development - teachers are more likely to make changes to the classroom practice.
They should be given the tools, the data and the connectivity to drive their own learning. This, of course, is mme moe's purpose.
Standard coaching in a school or district context has a few issues. It is either wildly expensive, extremely time intensive or both. Schools can't afford to coach everyone and teachers just do not have the time to add this to their daily schedules. Add to this its lack of inclusion and equity and the increasing use of coaching information in managerial settings. These are serious blockages to the use of what is an extremely useful set of tools.
Which is why at mme moe, we support a coach-yourself methodology with a set of tools that provide teachers with functionality that supports the habits of highly effective people. Our methodology enables teachers and school leaders to personalise their own learning, enabling the construction an co-construction of new models and knowledge, meaning that is is a creative tool rather than an accountability tool, distinguishing it from every other set of organisational practices.
mme moe promotes self coaching as a means to celebrate and share good practice.
Paul is the Chief Learning Coach at mme moe. mme moe is the culmination of years of experience and expertise in assisting people to get better at what they do.