Just how valuable is professional development?

Sam Di Sano

Teacher and School Enablement Leader at Atomi


min read

We all know that professional development is designed to help us keep up-to-date with the most recent advances in knowledge and skills in all things pedagogy, curriculum, and wellbeing, so that we can have the most significant impact that we can on student learning. But from time to time, it’s important to remind ourselves just how valuable professional development (PD) actually is.

Remember: It's mandatory

NESA isn't kidding around when it comes to maintaining accreditation. We are all aware that as teachers we have certain quotas to fill and this shouldn’t be new information to any of you but let’s summarise it quickly just in case it has slipped your mind.

Every teacher needs to complete at least 100 hours of professional development during their maintenance cycle (5 years for full-time teachers, 7 years for casual and part-time). The 100 hours are broken into two categories:

  1. NESA Registered Professional Development
  2. Teacher Identified Professional Development (TIPD)

Teachers need to complete at least 50 hours of NESA Registered professional development. The balance of your 100 hours can comprise TIPD, further NESA Registered professional development or a combination of both.

Why is it valuable?

PD is valuable because it fulfils an operational necessity for schools. However, there are many further benefits:

1. It's great for teacher engagement

Most teachers, like any other professionals, want to improve their practice. Whether it's for personal pride or career progression, giving teachers the opportunity to learn and grow as educators and leaders are crucial in order to keep them engaged, happy and satisfied in their jobs. With such a high rate of teachers leaving the profession, staff turnover has a real tangible cost to schools.

2. Parents want it

Just ask any parent what they want for their school-aged children; above all else, the response is the best teacher possible in every classroom. As parents, we want to know that our children are being taught relevant and up to date materials by teachers who have been able to keep up with the modern day changes and implement new ways of teaching and learning into their classrooms.

3. It improves student outcomes

Research shows that an inspiring and informed teacher is the most important school-related factor influencing student achievement.

So all in all, investing in your teachers through PD might just be one of the highest return-on-investment projects you undertake this year. The evidence now shows that great training produces great teachers, and great teachers produce great students.

Here at Atomi, our 2019 offerings for PD courses include:

  • Bringing video learning into the classroom (Descriptor 3.3.2, 3.4.2);
  • Blended and flipped learning - an introduction to active learning (Descriptor 3.2.2, 3.3.2);
  • Student wellbeing, engagement, achievement and the need for change in classroom practice (Descriptor 3.2.2);
  • Change management for teaching and learning (Descriptor 6.2.2);
  • Mentoring aspiring leaders (Descriptor 6.2.2).

To find out more about each of these NESA approved courses, feel free to browse our PD courses here.

Get in touch

So, if you are interested in booking a course for your school, or discussing something we can tailor specifically for you, feel free to contact me and we can get started.

Liked what you read? Check out more great articles:

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Published on

May 30, 2019

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