Restructuring the use of time is at the forefront of education research and reform. The ultimate goal of these efforts, of course, is to improve student learning, and one very important - indeed critical - means of reaching this goal is to restructure school time for professional development.
The Overview for this issue of Policy Briefs concentrates specifically on this area. It asks us to focus our attention and efforts on promoting regular, ongoing professional development for all staff during regular school time. Some programs of this kind already exist, but they are still the exception rather than the rule. The Overview also presents current education research on the topic and its implications for school reform and education policy.
In the Regional Actions and Agendas section, State Educational Agencies (SEAs) and Intermediate Service Agencies (ISAs) in the NCREL region respond to questions on issues, actions, and policy needs in their states concerning the use of time and its place in education reform. These responses address both the use of time in general and the use of time for professional development within each of the NCREL states. This broader approach allows us to view the total agenda for state reform as well as to examine local efforts toward restructuring time for professional development. Many professional development initiatives are not statewide at this point and therefore where statewide initiatives do exist, we have indicated them as part of the total state plan. The reader also should pay special attention to the "Policy Needs" section of each state's report.
To broaden the scope of information even further, we have included sections that provide an added variety of perspectives and experiences:
Posted on March 6, 1995