In 2018, the Wellcome Trust and Education Endowment Foundation commissioned Phase One of a project to explore the potential development of a quality assurance system for teachers’ Continuing Professional Development (CPD). The project was delivered by a consortium of the Chartered College of Teaching, the Teacher Development Trust and Sheffield Institute of Education, part of Sheffield Hallam University. The intention was to design, develop and research existing quality assurance systems and to test the potential for widespread, sustainable engagement in such a system.
In 2020, the Wellcome Trust commissioned Phase Two of the project, which will see a quality assurance system developed and tested with a small number of CPD providers. Their provision will be reviewed by a panel of stakeholders, including teachers, against set Quality Assurance criteria and recognition will be given to provision which meets these.
The rationale for this work is well-established: to support teachers and school leaders in making informed choices about CPD which is more likely to lead to improved pupil outcomes.
Phase one of the project gathered evidence about whether and how a system of quality assurance of teacher professional development could:
- bridge the gap between what the evidence shows and what school leaders and teachers use to make decisions about CPD provision;
- provide clear markers of where providers of CPD meet standards of quality, and at what level;
- drive improvements in CPD provision across the sector, by supporting providers to understand how they can improve their provision and evaluate its quality; and
- add further evidence to support increased understanding of the characteristics and mechanisms of effective professional development.
This phase of the project involved Stakeholder engagement and an evidence review which has been published by Wellcome
The second phase of the project, commissioned by Wellcome, will see the project partners exploring the feasibility and impact of a CPD quality assurance system in helping school leaders find high-quality professional development. A quality assurance system will be developed and tested with a small number of CPD providers. Their provision will be reviewed by a panel of stakeholders, including teachers, against set Quality Assurance criteria. The pilot will also provide support for providers to understand how they could evaluate their provision and identify improvements, and for schools to identify and select appropriate CPD for their needs.
The rapid evidence review carried out in phase one of the project can be found on the Wellcome website.
For further information about Phase Two of the project, visit the Chartered College of Teaching's website.