Learning Forward’s policy briefing in June 2023 was a special convening of education leaders representing superintendents, principals, teachers, and the U.S. Department of Education. Moderated by Learning Forward CEO Frederick Brown, the session featured participants who provided compelling insight and evidence about how professional learning is critical to retain teachers, intensify academic recovery, and meet the needs of all students.

Watch this special convening of education leaders representing superintendents, principals, teachers, and the U.S. DOE as they discuss how professional learning is critical to retain teachers and meet the needs of all students. Click To Tweet

This timely discussion focused on how Title II-A, the federal government’s largest direct investment in professional learning, supports activities such as instructional coaching, mentoring, and collaborative planning time, that improve teacher practice, student outcomes, and teacher and school leader retention. Learning Forward was instrumental in writing the definition of professional development in the Every Student Succeeds Act, Brown said, and “we were very vocal about defining acceptable uses for Title II-A funding, which for some districts, is their only source of funding for professional learning.”

Ranking Member Rep. Rosa DeLauro, House Labor Health Human Services and Education Appropriations Subcommittee, provided comments via video. “I want to thank Learning Forward for holding this timely briefing highlighting the importance of professional learning and the need for continued federal support,” DeLauro said. “I hope today’s briefing will open eyes on Capitol Hill to the centrality of high-quality professional learning to achieve our nation’s K-12 education goals.”

Brown said the briefing’s purpose was to bring attention to fallout from the debt ceiling deal that could put critical education programs in the crosshairs for double-digit percentage cuts, which Learning Forward chronicled in a June blog post. “We are asking that no cuts be made to Title II-A and, in fact, an increase be put in place to bring funding levels for Title II-A to $2.4 billion,” Brown said. “We cannot allow budget discussions to happen in a vacuum — there are real students and real teachers and real leaders who need this support.”

We encourage all educators to watch the briefing and to join us in documenting and providing evidence.

Visit the event page to download the slide deck and resources mentioned during the event.

Watch brief excerpts and the full event below.

Marla Ucelli-Kashyap with AFT discusses how Title II-A funds support teacher retention:

Principal Kevin Armstrong shares how his school uses Title II-A funds:

Gladys Cruz with AASA addresses the question, what is good professional learning, and why is it critical?:

Maureen Tracey Mooney with the U.S. Department of Education shares how Title II-A is more important than ever:

Watch the full event:

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Learning Forward is the only professional association devoted exclusively to those who work in educator professional development. We help our members plan, implement, and measure high-quality professional learning so they can achieve success with their systems, schools, and students.

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