Three Reasons Not to Overlook Professional Development for Substitute Teachers
If there is an aspect of education that does not get sufficient attention, it is the need for professional development for substitute teachers. The position of substitute teacher is demanding -- in many ways, more demanding than that of the regular classroom teacher, who has established routines and natural daily rhythms to bolster his or her daily activities. It is essential, therefore, that substitute teachers engage in every development opportunity available so that they can more easily manage their task.
Three Reasons Not to Overlook Professional Development for Substitute Teachers:
Reason One: Developed teachers boost student achievement. The evidence is undeniable: teacher development has a direction impact on student growth. Therefore, it behooves all teachers -- both daily classroom teachers as well as substitutes -- to consider this vital issue. If better-prepared teachers lead to higher-achieving students, then the choice is clear.
Reason Two: Developed teachers keep current. One of the most important reasons for ongoing teacher development is that key discoveries are being made daily across the board in all subject fields. Substitutes who neglect keeping current will quickly find their knowledge becoming irrelevant and will have a more difficult time engaging with students.
Reason Three: Developed teachers are less likely to abandon ship. According to experts, one of the reasons that one third of educators leave the classroom after a short time is that they are unprepared for the complexities of the profession: "Even experienced teachers confront great challenges each year, including changes in subject content, new instructional methods, advances in technology, changed laws and procedures, and student learning needs. Educators who do not experience e?ective professional development do not improve their skills, and student learning su?ers" (Learning Forward).
There are other reasons for substitute teachers to invest in professional development, of course, but the above three are perhaps the most vital. If you have questions or comments regarding ongoing professional development opportunities, please feel free to contact us. We look forward to helping you move forward.
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