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Be Professional

This is really for all you teachers out there: I signed up to a CLPL (Career Long Professional Learning) session on how to get smarter about using Professional Update on the GTCS site.  After today, I thought, I can truly get into being professional. I was almost excited at the thought of recording all my reading, courses and professional development. Great, I thought, much as I set a reminder for myself on a weekly basis, I look at the alert, tut, and ignore it.

Similarly, Dad told me a story that when he was living with V she would go on a  diet every week, buy a lettuce, cucumber and tomatoes and every week throw them out untouched and mouldy. She remained overweight.

We all do it – we all set ourselves goals and targets and then watch as they float on by.

Anyway back to the CLPL session this afternoon. The way it had been advertised I thought that we would be given some top tips on how to set our goals, and strike the balance between the demands of our Profession and the need to evidence that in a formal, ‘professional’ format.

I was reading the OECD Report (!) recently into ‘Curriculum for Equity and Equality’ and there is a breakdown of facts and figures that shows there are literally hundreds of statements and literally thousands of Experiences and Outcomes. Bonkers – no wonder we are all confused.

Well the GTCS Professional Update (PU) is a little like that with all its Standards and Key Focus areas. Some poor soul thought the intention was to highlight all the Standards as and when he had completed them. He’d be well into his retirement before he’d even got halfway.

The presenter started well – enthusiastic, lively, a ‘good teacher’, so she told us. But then she became like any other ‘sage on the stage’ and it became all about her, so 55minutes later she decided to let us log on. Had she stopped to ‘look aboot ye’ she would have seen that 90% of us had already done that. But no, she was on a mission to hear her own voice right to the bitter end. Whatever happened to Assessment is For Learning and Cooperative Learning i.e find out what your audience already know. So an hour and a half I will never get back. Did I learn anything – yup: how NOT to give a presentation. I left at 6pm, the official end of the ‘course’, and she was only just warming up. Fine, I thought, I’ll take an evaluation form and complete that. Lo and behold, no evaluation form.

I will ensure the next time the GTCS Professional Update buzzes as a reminder on a Tuesday evening, I will leave my own ‘reflective evaluation’ of this evening’s CLPL, professionally, of course.

Be Professional -a poem

tune in tune out let your audience speak to you

so many moons have waxed and waned for those in front of you

show some respect and ask them what they know

and learn just when its time for you not to be on show

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