The Work Group is the model of professional and school development used in most Maths Hubs projects.
A Work Group is:
- comprised of a group of schools who work on something together, normally over the large part of a school year, typically with one or two teachers from each school acting as lead participants
- led by a teacher or former teacher, expert both in the area of maths education in question and in leading teacher professional development
- normally part of a national network collaborative project (NCP), which supports the Work Group Leads and seeks to ensure lessons are learned from around the country.
Schools in every Work Group:
work towards outcomes linked to teachers’ professional learning, their practice development, the learning of the pupils they teach, and new approaches and policies in maths teaching across their school or department
maintain a focus on the classroom, often planning, observing and refining lessons together
evaluate the outcomes of the Work Group’s activity, with collated findings being fed into the national picture and used to inform future work.
In some teaching for mastery projects, the Work Group has previously also been referred to as a Teacher Research Group (TRG). The characteristics of a TRG are exactly the same as a Work Group.
Effective Professional Development
Effective teacher professional development is a partnership between:
- Headteachers and other members of the leadership team;
- Teachers; and
- Providers of professional development expertise, training or consultancy.
In order for this partnership to be successful:
- Professional development should have a focus on improving and evaluating pupil outcomes.
- Professional development should be underpinned by robust evidence and expertise.
- Professional development should include collaboration and expert challenge.
- Professional development programmes should be sustained over time.