What if you built a Volunteer Run School of Education–and nobody came?
First, I’ll give you the blog quote, then my response (below):
What if edu-passionate volunteers from around the world banned together to…
Build an open licensed, free, multilingual virtual school of education driven by the principles of peer learning.
Facilitate the free exchange of knowledge and ideas between educators in a context that positively transforms teacher and student practice, learning and engagement.
Codify existing educational best practices into a series of experiences that provide foundational knowledge of how to be an effective teacher.
Here’s my response (which isn’t showing up at Dot Learnt — maybe deleted as spam?):
Why would any teachers come? Yes, some might — the most active, the most excited, the most passionate. But they’re not the problem. How could you package teacher professional development so that it’s easily accessible, engaging, and no-cost (or as they’re finding in LAUSD, you have to pay the teachers to get them to attend)? You make a difference, at-scale, by engaging lots of teachers, not just the few who will voluntarily take the classes.
If you compare this to professions like law or medicine, the practice pays for the practitioner to seek out professional development (often at really nice locations!). But teachers are expected to work long hours at night, on their own time, for professional development? The sustainability problem with the volunteer school of ed idea is not to keep the volunteers producing, it’s to get teacher-participants.