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Evaluation of RETAIN: Early Career CPD for KS1 Teachers

Key Stage 1 Pupils


Project team

Dr Bronwen Maxwell, Lucy Clague, Eleanor Byrne, Dr Martin Culliney, Dr Mike Coldwell, Alison Glentworth (SIoE); Professor Andrew Hobson (University of Brighton)

Project date

2015-2017

Evaluation of pilot CPD programme for early career teachers (ECTs) with the aim of improving outcomes for disadvantaged pupils

Key findings of the evaluation

Effectiveness

  • ECTs' knowledge and understanding of approaches to teaching disadvantaged students, self-efficacy, confidence and research use increased.
  • ECTs' classroom practices became more aligned with research evidence.
  • Most ECTs perceived that RETAIN was beneficial to their professional and career development and none left the profession during the pilot.
  • There was no control group so it was not possible to say whether the changes that occurred were due to the programme.
  • The critical components appeared to be the taught sessions, in-school coaching by an external coach and peer collaboration. These components, together with the integration of research evidence throughout, appeared to be mutually reinforcing.

Feasibility

  • RETAIN was positively received in most schools, some would have welcomed closer working with their school.
  • ECTs found it easier to apply the learning from RETAIN in schools which were open to changing existing school practices.

Wider learning

  • Good quality, structured CPD which aligns with the ‘indicative characteristics of effective CPD’ (summary table created for this project) is likely to be a good investment.

Methodology

  • Theory-based mixed-methods evaluation testing intermediate outcomes that are associated with the intended long-term positive outcomes and exploring the plausibility of the underpinning causal theories and mediating factors.
  • Data were collected from interviews, surveys and observations.

Please visit the EEF's RETAIN web pages to learn more about the project.

Funders

Education Endowment Foundation

Documents

  • Pilot report and executive summary
  • Coldwell, M. and Maxwell, B. (under review) Using evidence-informed logic models to bridge methods in educational evaluation.
  • Overden-Hope, T., Blandford, S., Cain, T., Maxwell, B. (under review) ‘RETAIN’ Early Career Teacher Retention Programme: Evaluating the role of research informed continuing professional development for a sustainable 21st century teaching profession.
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