Simplifying PLD proposals lessens the workload

Issue: Volume , Number

Posted: 25 February 2019
Reference #: 1H9rRw

Professional learning and development (PLD) is an essential supporter and enabler of a system that learns. A new online process of applying for PLD is scheduled to be in place by term 3 this year

The new process

Instead of the current Excel spreadsheet, which asks schools, kura and kāhui ako to submit a detailed PLD proposal, the initial focus will be on three things:

  • The problem a school, kura or kāhui ako wants to solve.
  • How they know it is a problem.
  • The outcomes they are aiming for: the school and teacher capabilities that will help them continuously improve student outcomes.

Ministry of Education regional teams are available to provide additional help and support to schools, kura and kāhui ako as they work on the proposal that will be evaluated by an area allocation panel.

Successful proposals are allocated 10 to 15 hours for the PLD leads to work with a facilitator on a theory of change. This will outline the knowledge and understanding and changes in practice the school, kura or kāhui ako requires. It will also describe the changes in student outcomes that the PLD initiative is aiming for, along with a description of how the school, kura or kāhui ako will know if this change has occurred.

There will be improved online information to help them with this including ‘signposts’ to describe increasing teacher capability and practical examples of the capabilities that can be observed when a teacher reaches the ‘signpost’.

The move to a cloud-based system will also lessen the workload for schools, kura and kāhui ako. The new system cuts out the need for sending back and forth Excel spreadsheets. Everyone involved in the PLD initiative will have access to the same online system and the information they need to perform their role efficiently. 


Other improvements

“At the moment the focus is on designing a good online system but there will be other improvements from the perspective of schools, kura and kāhui ako. For example, they won’t have to report as many times as they work through their PLD journey,” says Dean Stanley.

“In fact we’d like to change the name of the system from the PLD Journal to the  PLD learning system to highlight that the focus is on helping schools, kura and kāhui ako to continuously improve.”

Why the process is changing

“What we’ve done is simplified the proposal process to lessen the upfront workload,” says PLD programme manager Dean Stanley.

“Currently schools, kura and kāhui ako supply a lot of detailed evidence, including information in documents that have already been provided to the Ministry.

“The new system will require less information up front in the development of proposals. Then if they are successful, they get facilitator time to frame up what they want to do in more detail before the PLD kicks in. The facilitator will help schools, kura and kāhui ako work out where they are currently at and to describe what knowledge, understanding and practice they need to achieve the student outcomes they are seeking. 

Dean Stanley said the Ministry’s PLD team listened to feedback from users when redesigning the PLD journal system and will be testing it with school, kura and kāhui ako users in March.


BY Education Gazette editors
Education Gazette | Tukutuku Kōrero,

Posted: 12:41 pm, 25 February 2019

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