Professional learning, pedagogical improvement, and the circulation of power

Year: 2004

Author: Gore, Jennifer, Ladwig, James, King, Bruce

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

In this paper we outline key theoretical concerns relating to the professional learning interests of the SIPA study. In particular, we draw on the release of the NSW model of pedagogy, Quality Teaching, as an opportunity to examine issues of power in professional learning and school reform agendas. In this context, we explore such issues as (1) the operation of the Quality Teaching framework as a regime of truth, (2) discourses surrounding schools' implementation of the Quality Teaching framework, and (3) the circulation of power as teachers engage with the Quality Teaching framework. Working hypotheses are posited and some preliminary data are analysed in relation to these questions.

We also consider implications of this specific case (Quality Teaching and SIPA) for teacher professional learning in general. In so doing, we offer some preliminary ideas on how commonly accepted principles of professional development both produce and constrain teacher learning and impact on the accomplishment of reform goals including, in this case, the substantial goals for pedagogical improvement that underpin the Quality Teaching framework.