By Learning Forward
April 2019
Vol. 40 No. 2

Effective Professional Development for Teachers to Foster Students’ Academic Language Proficiency Across the Curriculum:
A Systematic Review
AERA Open, February 8, 2019

This review summarizes features of professional learning that aim to prepare teachers to improve students’ academic language proficiency when teaching subject areas.
The 38 studies reviewed suggest that all of the profiled interventions were effective to some extent. The programs share many characteristics considered important in successful teacher professional learning across different subject areas.
This review supports the idea that professional learning helps change teachers’ thinking and practice and benefits students, if certain features are taken into consideration in its design and implementation.

The Instructional Leadership Corps: Entrusting Professional Learning
in the Hands of the Profession
Learning Policy Institute, February 21, 2019

The Instructional Leadership Core (ILC) is a collaborative professional learning project in California founded on the principle of “teachers teaching teachers.” With the support of intensive professional learning from experts, teachers organize local professional development for other teachers focused on implementing key instructional shifts required by new standards. This brief summarizes results and lessons learned from the first four years of the initiative. So far, it has served more than 100,000 California educators and responses have been “overwhelmingly positive.” ILC participants, the administrators who oversee them, and external observers have all noticed changes in teacher practice to reflect the content from the professional learning. The brief includes insights about the necessary conditions and enablers of success.

Relationships Between Instructional Coaches’ Time Use and District- and School-Level Policies and Expectations
American Educational Research Journal, February 8, 2019

This mixed-methods analysis asks how district- and school-level policies and expectations were related to coaches’ time use. Coaches accountable to district leaders spent more time working with teachers on instruction than their school-hired counterparts, who devoted more time to administrative and teaching duties. However, all coaches had limited opportunities to work with teachers in ongoing ways. The authors conclude, “Regardless of whether a coach is hired full-time or part-time to work at one school or several, district leaders, school administrators, and coaches themselves need to coordinate and negotiate the nature of coaches’ work.”

Teachers of English Language Learners in Secondary Schools:
Gaps in Preparation and Support
The Civil Rights Project, March 2018

This report analyzes data from a survey distributed among secondary teachers in a large urban school district to examine how well-prepared they feel to teach English learners. Without special preparation, even good teachers may find it difficult to meet English learners’ needs, and many secondary English learner teachers note that the preparation and support they most want and need is the least available to them.  The study also points out that the resources to assist these teachers may be in greater supply than is apparent.

Digest of Education Statistics, 2017
National Center for Education Statistics, January 2019

The digest provides a compilation of statistical information covering the broad field of education from prekindergarten through graduate school.
The publication contains data on a variety of topics, including the number of schools and colleges, teachers, enrollments, and graduates, in addition to educational attainment, finances, and federal funds for education, libraries, and international comparisons.

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