Kentucky's Definition of Professional Learning
According to 704 KAR 3:035
, "Professional development" means professional learning that:
- Aligns with standards and goals
- Focuses on content and pedagogy
- Occurs collaboratively
- Is facilitated by educators
- Focuses on continuous improvement
- Is on-going
In pursuit of our core educational values - equity, achievement, integrity - the Kentucky Department of Education promotes a coherent and comprehensive professional learning system that advances educator effectiveness and student success. “Research shows that no in-school factors matter more than teaching and leadership, and educators, like students, need continual opportunities to gain new knowledge and skills to enable all students to reach [transition] readiness.” (Learning Forward & Education Counsel. 2017. A new vision for professional learning.)
High-Quality Professional Learning
Research demonstrates a positive link between high-quality professional learning (HQPL), teaching practices and student
outcomes. Effective professional learning not only has the potential to improve both classroom instruction and student
outcomes, but also it can be effective in recruiting and retaining teachers. When designing and/or selecting HQPL at the local
level, it is important to ensure alignment with the characteristics below.
Professional Learning Bulletin Board
Along with the increase in online learning for students due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the need for online professional learning opportunities for educators has also increased. The Professional Learning Bulletin Board (PLBB) is a great resource for exploring options for professional learning. Currently, over 70 professional learning offerings are posted on the PLBB, including sessions for administrators, counselors, certified and classified staff. A wide variety of topics are available in both virtual and on-demand formats, many of which include EILA credit, and the site is regularly updated.
Online Professional Learning and Instructional Resources
Many of Kentucky’s education partners have generously created lists of online instructional resources to assist educators and families during this time of extended remote learning. The Online Professional Learning and Instructional Resources document contains links for both instructional support and professional growth and will be updated regularly. These resources have not all been vetted by the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE), nor should this be considered an endorsement. Educators should be mindful of digital resources that require teachers or students to create online accounts. Please check with district policies and consider HIPPA, FERPA, and COPPA laws with regards to student privacy BEFORE implementing any of these resources.
Replace In-Person Professional Learning with Kentucky Academic Standards Professional Learning Modules for Teachers
With in-person professional learning opportunities being canceled, schools and districts may be looking for alternatives.
KYstandards.org provides many professional learning modules that help build better understanding of the Kentucky Academic Standards. Modules can be facilitated in a virtual professional learning environment or teachers can work through modules on their own.
Visit the Professional Learning Modules webpage to check the modules out.