Professional Development Offerings for Principals in the Commonwealth of Virginia
Hunley-Stukes, Deborah Arnita
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As the instructional leader, principals must engage in on-going professional development training for their learning and to aid in improving student achievement (Grande, 2012). This quantitative study examined the present baseline of professional development offerings in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The research questions that were explored are as follows: What professional development programs do school divisions provide for principals in the Commonwealth of Virginia? What topics are included in the professional development programs? In what format are the topics delivered? What types of professional development programs are offered to support new principals in their role as the instructional leader? What types of professional development programs are offered to support veteran principals in their role as the instructional leader? To what extent are the professional development training/programs offered in the Commonwealth of Virginia aligned to the Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC) standards? How do the professional development offerings vary by superintendents�[BULLET] region, urbanicity and division size? Once the data were collected by surveying professional development coordinators or equivalent personnel, the researcher assessed the alignment of the school divisions�[BULLET] professional development offerings with the ISLLC Standards. These standards were designed to provide guidance to state policy makers as they worked to improve educational leadership preparation, licensure, evaluation, and professional development (CCSSO, 2008). The findings were: (1) professional development offerings for principals across the Commonwealth of Virginia are aligned with national standards; (2) school divisions in the Commonwealth provided professional development opportunities for principals with heavy emphasis on instruction as well as shared vision and school culture; (3) there is a low level of differentiation of professional development offerings for principals based on interest or individual need; (4) the professional development training sessions in the Commonwealth mostly consisted of �[BULLET]one shot�[BULLET] sessions with a few on-going learning opportunities; (5) the majority of the professional development sessions offered to principals were provided either by external or in-house presenters with few examples of internal and external partnerships;(6) school divisions across the Commonwealth of Virginia that provided professional development training sessions to principals relied heavily on face-to-face interaction and minimally utilized technology to transform the format of professional development opportunities; and (7) not all divisions maintained records of professional development for principals.
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