Volume 5, Issue D ::: June 2002
Web Resources for States Interested in Improving and Expanding their Professional Development Systems
by Lennox McLendon
For more than 30 years, as a teacher, program director, state director, and now director of the National Adult Education Professional Development Consortium (NAEPDC), Dr. Lennox McLendon has provided professional development opportunities to adult basic educators that respond to their varied needs and time constraints. For this issue of Focus on Basics, Dr. McLendon compiled a list of web-based resources, predominantly posted by states, that he has used successfully in building a staff development system. Only a sample of the rich resources available to states interested in exploring professional development options,they are organized in sections based on six interrelated components that Dr. McLendon has identified as key to creating an effective professional development system. State policy, pre-service training, systems training, responsive professional development, opportunities for each practitioner to share, and self-evaluation and program evaluation combine to create an atmosphere in which all educators are accountable to learn and develop as professionals.
- Jessica Mortensen
State policy should communicate expectations and guide development, implementation, and evaluation of professional development resources.
Ohio - http://literacy.kent.edu/Oasis/ABLE/ProfDev/
Guidelines for financial support and compensation for professional development activities.
A policy clarifying expectations for both new and experienced staff, roles and responsibilities of each, available and allowable financial support, and rewards and sanctions
West Virginia -
A state policy that sets expectations for each practitioner's annual professional development and encourages programs to consider not rehiring those who do not fulfill the recommendations.
Preservice training should orient new practitioners to the profession and clarify roles, relationships, and expectations that may be different from their previous educational experience.
A two part training workshop (that carries CEU credit) and 100-page handbook for teachers with less than two years experience.
A CD ROM with information for newcomers to adult education, it has major sections: the Adult Learner, the Adult Education Program, Adult Education, and Professional Development.
Kentucky - http://www.kyvae.org/
A virtual education program.
Kentucky - http://www.kyvu.org/
A virtual university with professional development courses for adult educators.
Kentucky - http://www.kyvl.org/
A virtual library with an adult education section.
Kentucky - http://adulted.state.ky.us/PD_Catalog_01.doc
A list of Kentucky's on-line and face-to-face professional development orientation resources.
Texas - http://cie.ci.swt.edu/newteacher/contents.htm
A "tool kit" of links to resources on the principles of adult learning; the teaching˝learning transaction; diverse learning styles, abilities, and cultures; accountability; funding streams; and continuing professional development.
Virginia - http://www.vcu.edu/aelweb/
"Core Training for New Instructors" provides training on the basics of effective instruction for teachers in their first two years of practice. Delivered via workshops, e-courses, and mentoring, it includes a discussion of "The Adult Learning System," which depicts how adult education fits into a community's system of adult education and training services.
West Virginia -
A professional development catalogue that outlines requirements that must be completed prior to beginning instruction, including different requirements for full versus part time teachers.
Systems training should equip every practitioner with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to implement state procedures (e.g., data systems, assessment systems, etc.) consistently.
Florida - http://www.aceofflorida.org/inservice/
Online training for the GED 2002.
West Virginia -
A variety of systems training activities can be found in their Pathways to Success catalogue.
Responsive Professional Development
Responsive professional development options should engage and support practitioners in identifying and developing those parts of their professional repertoire that need improvement.
Arkansas (hosted on
Rhode Island's web site) -
An outline of various staff development activities that provide examples of alternative ways to respond to teachers' professional development needs.
Rhode Island - http://www.brown.edu/Departments/
Teacher inquiry projects and related research resources.
Virginia - http://www.vcu.edu/aelweb/checkbox_pdpform.pdf
An inquiry-based process for teachers to create a professional development plan based around self-assessment.
Virginia - http://www.vcu.edu/aelweb/Sampler2000.PDF
A sample of learning activities that can support the above process.
West Virginia - http://wvabe.state.
Types of elective in-service training that instructors may select. These include self-directed learning, collegial sharing, training, and inquiry.
Self and Program Evaluation
Self and program evaluation should be carried out in relationship to some standard.
NCAL - http://www.literacyonline.org/pdk/
The National Center on Adult Literacy's Professional Development Kit (PDK), a multi-media teacher-centered system, contains a teacher self-assessment
Ohio - http://literacy.kent.edu/
A teacher self-assessment model that identifies potential professional development activities by rating performance in attaining specific competencies.
Pro-Net - http://www.pro-net2000.org/CM/info.asp
Competency lists for teachers and program managers, including an assessment that can be conducted by an instructional leader or used as a self-assessment.
Opportunities for practitioners to share with peers what they learned through professional development activities should be provided.
At the end of the year, local program tutors, teachers, program managers get together to 1) report on completed professional development projects, 2) evaluate program strengths and weaknesses, and 3) plan for new professional development and program improvement plans.