Backwards Design for Professional Learning
Effective professional development enables AUS educators to develop the content and pedagogy needed to address students’ and teachers’ instructional challenges. Beginning with the end in mind, allows us to back map our approaches to improvement as we have identified the desired outcomes and steps for improvement.
As AUS strives to consistently improve, professional development requires thoughtful planning. Careful implementation with reflective feedback ensures that we respond to the learning needs of all. As we develop and participate in cycles of embedded professional development; leaders and teachers are expected to put their new knowledge and skills to work. This model includes New Teacher University, Co-Teacher University, Parent University, and other internal/external opportunities throughout school year to engage all stakeholders.
Effective Professional Development
The effectiveness of professional development depends on how carefully AUS educators and external partners conceive, plan, and implement the comprehensive improvement plans. There is no substitute for rigorous preparation and thoughtful execution, and if something isn’t working we reevaluate, make corrections to move forward. Our professional development model is measured by the ability to see improvements in teaching and learning across the entire school.
Collaboration is expected and valued as it ensures that professional growth is promoted, monitored and evaluated. We provide resources, on-going learning opportunities, and support for educators to develop the knowledge and skills needed to improve instruction. This blended support is provided by external partners, school leaders, instructional coaches, grade level chairs, and content team leaders. At AUS, all educators are teacher leaders!
Continuous Professional Growth
The AUS Curriculum & Instruction department engages all instructional staff through a robust cycle of instructional improvement measures that are aligned with our professional development plan. The external partners (consultants) work with school-wide administrators and instructional coaches to create, implement, and evaluate the effectiveness of our blended professional development model. This cadre is currently working on the following initiatives:
- Building Effective Data Teams within PLCs
- Implementing Balanced Literacy through the Teaching and Learning Cycle
- Developing High Quality Instruction in Mathematics
- Understanding, Cultivating, and Implementing NGSS Standards
- Increasing Rigor and Student Engagement in CORE Content Areas
Knowing that it is imperative for educators to drive their own learning; AUS also offers a 300 KD continuing education allowance for instructional and non-instructional staff that has completed a two year contract. These funds can be utilized to attend a professional conference, take a collegiate level course or to obtain an advanced degree. Growing capacity our first priority.