Consider the time and money that has been spent on professional development for those within your organization. Have these investments resulted in tangible, consistent and sustainable improvements in your school system? Unfortunately, our traditional approach to professional development is does not bring about organizational learning. Most educational leaders, perhaps assuming there is no other viable option, unconsciously accept and perpetuate an ineffective approach to professional development.
How often are key professionals thrown into their positions without the support they need to grow and flourish? Are these important individuals provided with professional learning that is sustained, collaborative and relevant? There is an alternative to the 'good luck' approach to induction that is often the norm for professionals who hold unique roles within our school systems.
A recently released (June 2013) review by the National Council on Teacher Quality underscores the inconsistencies in traditional teacher preparation programs across the country. In short, the report indicates that teachers are not entering the field with common skills or understanding of the expectations of their positions. In the field of special education, it is not uncommon for teachers to earn their certifications through alternative methods with even less consistency and oversight than traditional programs.