A recent article in the Sydney Morning Herald http://www.smh.com.au/national/education/teacher-quality-depends-on-culture-of-development-20120819-24ghr.html
stated that “research consistently finds that quality teaching is the leading in-school influence on student outcomes. Education ministers have recently endorsed
two important statements, the Australian Teacher Performance and Development Framework and the Australian Charter for the Professional Learning of Teachers and
School Leaders on how to improve the quality of teaching and leadership in Australia’s schools which can be found here http://www.aitsl.edu.au/professional-learning/professional-learning.html#2
The framework describes the entitlement of all teachers to work in environments where they know what is expected of them, receive ongoing, meaningful feedback ontheir teaching, and have access to high-quality support to improve their practice.
There is growing evidence that teachers thrive in a culture focused on improving teaching to enhance student outcomes and characterised by frequent feedback, coaching and access to high-quality professional learning which is collaborative.
The charter states that we need professional learning that ” uses technology to enrich collaboration and learning and that it should provide for teachers the opportunities to receive feedback on practice and observe the practice of others. Professional learning which offers support to change practice through coaching and mentoring and reflection.”
These are characteristics of the IRIS Connect 21st professional development system.
IRIS is designed for teacher reflection. Gone are the days of handwritten notes or trying to remember the lesson, with IRIS Connect a teacher can make a video of the lesson then upload it into a secure web environment and review it later on a computer or laptop at a time that is convenient. In other words, I can record my self teach and then review and reflect in the comfort of my own home. I can then share that practice with a mentor and ask for advice. My mentors can review my lesson at a time that is conveneient for them and provide some ideas by attaching comments and tagging the video. IRIS Connect is an extremely efficient way for teachers to reflect and be mentored.
Schools can build collaborative cultures for professional development by adding “good practice” to the Shared Library on IRIS building professional learning communities within the school.
To view Chifley College’s experiences go to www.seeshareshape.com.au or register for the See ,Share, Shape Conference and hear what schools in Australia are saying.