Maryland Professional Development Planning Guide
This guide provides a framework for planning professional development that (1) meets teachers’ professional learning needs, (2) contributes to improved student learning, and (3) addresses priorities in district master plans and school improvement plans. The guide is aligned with the Maryland Teacher Professional Development Standards. It also focuses on the professional development quality indicators addressed by the Maryland State Department of Education’s Survey of Teacher Participation in High-Quality Professional Development.
Who should use the guide? Everyone who is responsible for planning professional development activities can use the guide. Because of the importance of sharing responsibility and distributing leadership for professional development, it is most appropriate for groups, such as school improvement teams (SIT), members of a department or grade-level team, and local and state partnerships and consortia. Individuals and groups are strongly encouraged to use the guide to plan with external providers and consultants.
What kinds of activities does the guide help you plan? The guide will help plan ongoing study groups and similar kinds of collaborative learning activities for teachers and others who may join them. It will also help plan workshops, training sessions, graduate courses, Continuing Professional Development courses, and professional conferences and meetings. The guide will be less useful in planning one-time events or short-term activities. In addition, it will not be particularly useful in planning activities with limited goals, such as providing information about new practices, or with goals that do not explicitly focus on changes in practice and improving student learning outcomes.
How do I use the guide? The guide takes you through five steps to develop your plan. Each step prompts you with questions about key components of the professional development that you are planning.
Step 1: Identify the need for the activity and who will participate.
Step 2: Specify the intended outcomes and begin working
on the evaluation plan.
Step 3: Specify the content, learning activities, and follow
up necessary to ensure implementation and use of new
knowledge and skills.
Step 4: Complete the evaluation plan.
Step 5: Identify resource needs and prepare a budget
In its electronic form, the guide is designed to make it easy to alter the details of your plan as new issues and questions arise. When the initial planning process is completed, the guide will generate hard copy of your plan that is easy to read and that can be readily shared with others. You can also use the guide for modifying your plan as you receive feedback and suggestions from others.
Getting started with the guide
When you have finished reading this introduction, click on “NEXT PAGE,” and follow the directions. You will complete your plan by providing the information requested and responding to the various prompts and questions that are presented. In some cases, drop-down menus will appear and you can click on the appropriate choices. In other cases, you will be asked to provide a short written description of an element of your plan.
Throughout the guide, there are Planning Tips to help you think about specific parts of your plan. To review a planning tip, just click on the tip and the text will appear. The planning tips are offered as suggestions. They do not define requirements for your plan.
Navigating in the guide is easy. Use the scroll bar on the right-hand side of the page to move up and down the page and use the “NEXT PAGE” and “PREVIOUS PAGE” buttons to move from one section of the plan to another.
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