Utah Districts Institute Common Planning Time
There seems to be a lot of interest these days in on-the-job teacher training provided through professional learning communities, or teams of teachers that meet to review student data and samples of student work and compare teaching strategies. Now some districts in Utah are rearranging their school schedules to give teachers paid time to work this way, according to this story.
Two of the districts will start Fridays 60 to 90 minutes late, or end school early, to facilitate the common planning time.
The story gives some great examples of how this kind of professional development can be utilized. Teachers in one school, the story notes, decided to come up with some common math formative assessments. When they compare the results from these test, the teachers determine which teaching strategies were more fruitful.