Web Sites (all sites will open in a new window)
21st Century Teachers Network: Connecting Teachers with Technology directed by the McGuffey Project; Founding sponsor, the University of Phoenix. The 21st Century Teachers Network is a nationwide volunteer movement encouraging teacher leaders in educational technology to develop new skills for using technology in their teaching and learning activities. The Network encourages teachers to commit to 4 main actions: to build their own expertise in using new learning technologies; to share their expertise and experience with colleagues; to use their expertise with students as part of the daily learning process, and to work to make classroom technology available to all students and teachers. This site also has links to current education and technology news, a calendar of workshops and events, access to other teachers through a message board, a library of research, lesson guides and training tools, and education and technology resources posted by members.
Learn & Live from The George Lucas Educational Foundation. This 1997 online book is a collection of articles regarding innovative schools across the U.S. It is available free online, article by article or downloadable in 12 chapter-length PDF files. The Book provides "visionary essays from leading educators, narratives from classroom teachers, and annotated descriptions of hundreds of print and electronic resources."
Library of Staff Development Information from the National Staff Development Council. A large number of recent articles on nearly 70 topic areas are reprinted here from various NSDC publications. It's a wealth of valuable information at your fingertips!
National Plan for Improving Staff Development from the National Staff Development Council. At one time staff development was synonymous with "sit and get" sessions in which relatively passive participants were "made aware" of the latest ideas regarding teaching and learning from so-called "experts." Today, staff development not only includes high-quality training programs with intensive follow-up and support, but also other growth-promoting processes such as study groups, action research, and peer coaching, to name a few. NSDC, as an organization, believes that staff development is fundamentally people improvement.
Phi Delta Technology Audit Services from Phi Delta Kappa International, in partnership with Education Technology Planners and Mehlinger and Associates. Is your school grappling with technology accountability and equity issues? Are your technology investments really making a significant difference for all students? This site provides information regarding a full range of technology audit services designed to enable you to determine the impact of current technology use on teaching and learning in your district and to plan effectively for future technology use. These services are derived from over 20 years of technology planning and assessment with more than 2500 schools and districts across the nation by Co-directors, Dr. Howard Mehlinger and Bernajean Porter.
Professional Competency Continuum: Skills for the Digital Age from the Milken Family Foundation. This site provides educators with a framework for envisioning what competencies they need for success in the technology-supported classroom, and a continuum of progress towards those competencies. It outlines stages of progress in the third of the Milken Exchange's Seven Dimensions for Gauging Progress: Professional Competency. The publication provides access to a rich database of resources and strategies to assist educators in realizing the opportunities for technology in their classrooms.
Standards for Staff Development from the National Staff Development Council. These national standards are aimed at giving schools, districts, and states direction regarding what constitutes quality staff development. The bottom line is that staff development must shift from counting how many staff participate and whether they enjoyed the session, to determining whether the system is improving student achievement.
Does Professional Development Change Teaching Practice? Results from a three-year study published by the U.S. Department of Education in 2000. This is a detailed report in PDF format on a study of the effectiveness of Eisenhower-funded staff development programs in mathematics and science teaching. The researchers found that six key features of high-quality professional development led to increases in teachers' self-reported knowledge and skills and to changes in teaching practice: three structural features (reform type, duration, and collective participation) and three core features (active learning, coherence, and content focus).
Professional Development: Learning from the Best. A "toolkit" in PDF format by Emily Hassel published by the North Central Regional Educational Laboratory in 1999. This is a step-by-step guide to help you implement strong, sustainable professional development that drives the achievement of your student learning goals. It is designed to help you tailor your professional development to the unique vision, goals, students, and teachers of your school or district. The tools in the booklet take you through the four major steps of (1) designing, (2) implementing, and (3) evaluating and improving your professional development program, and finally, (4) sharing professional development learning.
A New Vision for Staff Development by Dennis Sparks & Stephanie Hirsh, 1997. Staff development is undergoing profound changes as traditional approaches fall short of current needs and educators face new challenges. Gone are the days when teachers were the primary & passive recipients of "sit and get" training. Today, effective staff development is targeting everyone who affects student learning, and the total organization--not just the individual--is improving through multiple forms of learning. This book tells how three powerful ideas (results driven education, systems thinking, and constructivism) are shaping the new staff development. They describe how the focus has shifted from the district to the school, from fragmented efforts to comprehensive plans, from adult needs to student needs, from off-site training to job-embedded learning, and from generic skills to a combination that includes content-specific skills as well.
Teaching With Technology: Creating Student-Centered Classooms by Judith Haymore Sandholtz, Cathy Ringstaff & David Dwyer, 1997. What happens between student and teacher when computers move into the classroom? Drawing on over 20,000 episodes in the longitudinal database of ACOT classrooms, this book gives us vivid case studies and eloquent teacher voices, addressing teacher's perennial concerns: teacher learning and teacher beliefs about instructional change; redefining student and teacher roles; maintaining student engagement; reducing teacher isolation; managing the technology-rich classroom.