CPDs promote effective use of ICT

The Western Mail has reported that a scheme which helps teachers develop their knowledge and skills has had a positive impact in the classroom, according to Wales’s education watchdog.

An assessment of the Continuous Professional Development project, administered by the General Teaching Council for Wales, was commissioned by the Assembly Government and conducted by Estyn.

The inspectorate found that in most cases, professional development projects have helped raise pupils’ achievements and have contributed to the wider development of schools.

Estyn’s report evaluates the impact of CPD projects for teachers in primary and secondary schools in Wales. Teachers can apply for different amounts of WAG funding, from £650 for a professional development activity of their choice, to £5,250 for a teacher sabbatical.

Most development activities are closely related to teachers’ everyday work, covering areas such as early years, ICT, management skills, science, special educational needs, thinking skills and teaching and learning methodologies.

In her report, lead inspector Penny Lewis said: “Many teachers use ICT effectively as a tool to record and analyse quantitative and qualitative evidence on the outcomes of their CPD project, but only a few teachers use electronic means to gain pupils’ opinions, such as using on-line questionnaires.

“In most cases, this is because teachers do not have the necessary know-how. Most teachers’ CPD projects show some degree of positive impact on raising pupil achievement and contributing to wider school development.

“The impact of projects designed to improve pupil confidence and motivation is less clearly evidenced.”

She added: “Most headteachers provide good opportunities for teachers to disseminate the outcomes of their CPD projects, for example through an agenda item at staff meetings or training workshops. The GTCW also provides good opportunities for dissemination through its website, conferences and journal, which showcase best-practice examples.”

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