The pilot programme to make available Early Professional Development (EPD) to teachers in the second and third years of their careers was launched by the DfES in September 2001. The pilots were eslablished in 12 LEAs and ran until July 2004.
The NFER undertook a three-year evaluation of the EPD pilot scheme on behalf of the DfES and the General Teaching Council for England (GTC).
- There was strong evidence that the EPD scheme had a very positive effect on participating teachers. For example, in the final year of the pilot, more than three-quarters of surveyed teachers registered that EPD had impacted on their overall professional practices to a considerable degree.
- The early professional development of teachers led to them becoming more effective members of their school communities. The outcomes teachers derived from EPD activities increased their confidence, improved their practice and gave a clearer idea of their preferred career path, which then served as the vital step towards teachers becoming more active within the school and, beyond that, to further impacts at a whole-school level.
- Pupils were regarded as the beneficiaries of the EDP scheme, with the vast majority of surveyed teachers perceiving that improvements in their practice as a result of EPD had considerably enhanced their pupils' learning.
- When the attitudes and experiences of EPD teachers were contrasted with the comparative sample of non-participating teachers outside the pilot areas, the outcomes of the scheme in terms of retention in the teaching profession were apparent. EPD teachers rated the likelihood of their remaining in teaching more highly than the comparative sample irrespective of phase of school, year of teaching or LEA type.
- A number of factors emerged as influential in the generation of effects from EPD. These were: teacher autonomy (i.e. teacher involvement in selecting their professional development opportunities); school support; mentor support; and LEA support.
How to cite this publication:
Moor, H., Halsey, K., Jones, M., Martin, K., Stott, A., Brown, C. and Harland, J. (2005). Professional Development for Teachers Early in their Careers: an Evaluation of the Early Professional Development Pilot Scheme (DfES Research Report 613). London: DfES.