Recommendation 4: Implement a zero-based budget model to fund teacher-choice professional
Professional learners are asked to submit requests based on opportunities they wish to pursue. Zero-based budgeting establishes a bias for thoughtfully planned, active professional learning and eliminates
scenarios where professional learning funds are spent haphazardly.
Recommendation 5: Develop and regularly utilize unconference-like events to foster personalized,
collaborative learning. Unconference events adhere to the essential conditions of personalized
professional learning mentioned in the report findings.
Recommendation 6: Create professional learning coach roles across school divisions in which coaches
provide ongoing instructional guidance, advice and mentoring to support teachers in the
implementation of professional learning into classroom instruction.
Recommendation 7: Teacher contracts are created to include increased time and flexibility in teacher
choice professional learning.
In order to address the overriding issues of time for professional learning that emerged from our
research, we recommend creating teacher contract options to empower teachers to choose different
models of professional learning throughout the school year, and to give them the time to reflect, plan
and implement their learning. These options can be reflected in a menu of teacher contract options that
include time for professional learning and the implementation of that learning.
Recommendation 8: Construct an information base and develop an evaluation framework in order to
audit and assess the impact of professional learning.
Currently at ASB, the teaching and implementation of technology by teachers and students is
documented through a “technology audit” that is performed near the end of each school year. This
process consists of interviews of each classroom teacher and is conducted by technology directors and
tech integration coaches in each division. This technology audit results in a macro view of how
technology is implemented across the school and can thus be used in conjunction with other data to
determine the impact of technology use on student learning. This audit provides the starting point for a
possible model that can result in a Professional Learning Audit. The purpose of a Professional Learning
Audit, then, would be to ascertain the extent to which professional learning is implemented in classes
and, when combined with other data, the broader impact on student learning.
The design thinking process that guided our work allowed us to understand and define ASB teachers’
professional learning needs – needs that are specific to our community. ASB’s Leadership Team has
begun to act on several of these recommendations. However, it was our literature study that gave us
the basis in broader research to hopefully make our work relevant beyond the walls of our school.
One of the most exciting aspects of our work is that it is far from done. In fact, the real work of
continuously meeting the professional growth needs of educators is perpetual. As with any other work,