Earlier this term, Director of Kingsbridge Research School, Jon Eaton led a professional development session for SWIFT Directors based on the Education Endowment Foundation’s Professional Development Guidance report.
The recommendations from the report state:
Essentially, when designing professional development, consider the 14 recommended EEF mechanisms as a checklist to strengthen the effectiveness of training as part of the implementation process, along with other strategies, for example, coaching.
The follow-up session looked at a Theory of Change as an implementation tool to inform programme and intervention design.
A Theory of Change can be used to improve communication, motivation and programme design. Showing the causal chain behind a programme supports deeper thinking about exactly what the programme is supposed to achieve and how. By working backwards from the desired outcome, via the intermediate outcomes, to the original problem (“This leads to this, leads to that…”), we also help develop a shared understanding.
Another bonus for schools is improved evaluation. A Theory of Change helps leaders identify weaknesses in planning, leading to clearer sense of what to evaluate. Otherwise, the danger can be that assumptions are made. Jon cited a Kingsbridge Research School project which used the Theory of Change model to develop an improved transition experience in Maths, involving Maths staff, CODE Maths Hub, CEOs and school leaders.
By the end of the session, our Directors were enthused, engaged and keen to identify a shared SWIFT Delivery Team project in order to put into effect this gift of a logic and clarity to energise their combined CPD delivery.
May our schools find the SWIFT 2022 – 2023 programmes all the more measured and motivating for you and your colleagues.
Report by Jude Owens, PA to the SWIFT Executive Team
Kingsbridge Research School Teaching and Learning Series 2022 - 2023
Session 1 | Designing Effective Professional Development | Friday 14 October 2022 | 0930 – 1100 | Online
Session 2 | Effective Modelling in the Classroom | Friday 20 January 2023 | 0930 – 1100 | Online
Session 3 | Designing a Theory of Change | Monday 17 April 2023 | 0930 – 1200 | Coombeshead Academy