Meaning – Research shows that for a CPD programme to have significant organisational or cultural change, it needs to last at least 2 terms. Within those two terms, there should be multiple, iterative activities following some initial input. Small amounts of repetition only have an impact on very specific and narrowly-defined processes, and one-off events do not have a positive impact.
When designing CPD processes, it should be considered that significant changes need to be planned for sustained, iterative change. One-off input should only be used for informing new information (e.g. what has changed to the exam syllabus this year) and small repetitions should be used for very focussed changes.
It should be noted spending more time alone does not necessarily mean improved outcomes – that time should be spent meaningfully!
Examples of what that would mean in practice
Every other Wednesday, pupils leave school 90 minutes earlier, and staff have dedicated time for their CPD. 80% of these sessions are allocated to Professional Learning Groups, where groups of staff focus on a particular pupil learning issue they would like to improve, or a strength they would like to develop.
The Professional Learning Groups include some input from external expertise at the beginning of the year, an opportunity to observe pupils and diagnose the specific needs of the pupils, some exploration and discussion of the evidence-base, an opportunity to try out new practice and then share findings and reflections, then adapt and improve practice.
The Focus section has more research and resources on iterative CPD programmes, as well as other resources around what content a CPD programme should include.
This page from the Processes and Structures of CPD section also has more resources around finding time for CPD.