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Breaking Down Math and Science Professional Development

At a time when policymakers are interested in improving the quality of math and science teaching, a new book examines strategies for the professional development of educators in those subjects.

It's written by Iris R. Weiss and Joan D. Pasley of Horizon Research, Inc., a private research company in North Carolina. Weiss, the president of Horizon, and her team spent several years studying the Local Systemic Change programs, professional development efforts sponsored by the National Science Foundation. The LSC program sought to reach large numbers of teachers across districts in provide them with sustained professional training (teachers were required to take part in 130 hours of PD work). Weiss' group conducted an evaluation of the LSC program in 2006.

The authors make suggestions about the development of PD programs, based on their observations of the Systemic Change programs. The book, which just came out, is titled, "Mathematics and Science for a Change: How to Design, Implement, and Sustain High-Quality Professional Development." Read a sample chapter here.

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