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Professional Development

Considerations of human capital—the collective knowledge, skills, and competencies of individuals that contribute to their productivity—are vital in discussions regarding investments in public education. Because student outcomes depend on high-quality educators, policymakers at all levels of the education system have focused on quality teachers as a critical resource in attempts to reach the ambitious goals embedded in current high-stakes accountability reforms. While much attention has been devoted to the preparation of high-quality entry-level teachers, leaders throughout the education system have also recognized the importance of ongoing professional development as a way to enhance the capacity of the existing teacher workforce. Though professional development varies across school systems in terms of dominant approaches, level of investment, and effectiveness, researchers and policymakers alike have come to recognize ...

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