Evaluation Results from the Sept. 27th “Un-PD Day”

The premise of the September 27th Professional Development Day was that choices are good.  Although we have some state-mandated training to complete, teachers prefer to make decisions about their own professional development needs.  The critical factor in teacher professional development is always time. 

Unlike most other professions teachers have little time to develop their knowledge and skills.  Doctors and lawyers spend significant time away from patients and clients to develop their craft.  The perception with teaching can be that teachers are not “working” if they are not in front of students.  The district let go of this perception on September 27th.  When provided time and opportunity Burlington teachers demonstrated that they can help each other develop and improve.  The district’s continued challenge is to allow this development to occur every day as an integral part of the job.  Professional development can’t just happen on discrete days throughout the school year.

The survey monkey results are linked below.  In general, the comments were positive.   There were several great suggestions in regards to having people sign up for sessions ahead of time.  Patrick had the high school teachers sign up and it worked well.  We will borrow this practice on the next PD Day.

September 27th Survey Results

Password if asked (Sept27)

2 thoughts on “Evaluation Results from the Sept. 27th “Un-PD Day”

  1. Gerald Beuchelt

    Glad it worked. Note though, that the idea behind unconference style meetings is that the agenda gets created during the meeting. In my experience, it is particular effective for peer groups, where there is no clear “expert”, but instead a great pool of collective knowledge.

    You might want to consider including an initial more structured agenda for the beginning of the meeting, with an Open Space meeting towards the end (or the other way round).

  2. Andrew Marcinek

    I was glad to be a part of this PD as a virtual presenter and also excited to see the unconference method working well within a school district. This type of PD allows for learning and should also allow time for practice. One suggestion I would make after reading the survey responses, is to allot some time throughout the day (afternoon) for teachers to team up, collaborate, and practice using what they just learned.

    When I was designing the schedule for ntcamp Philly last summer, I had a “power networking session” after lunch, but it never lived up to it’s billing since lunch ran late. It simply was not enough time. What I learned is to allow more time, an entire sessions worth to allow all to continue the learning through sharing and doing.

    Again, so excited to see this taking off in your school and look forward to hearing about the next session.


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