Secondary Education Curriculum Guide Booklet 11 Professional Development and Schools as Learning Organisations

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Secondary Education Curriculum Guide

Booklet 11

Professional Development and Schools as Learning Organisations

Prepared by

The Curriculum Development Council Recommended for use in schools by the Education Bureau




Booklet 11 Professional Development and Schools as Learning Organisations

This is one of the 11 booklets in the Secondary Education Curriculum Guide. Its contents are as follows:

Contents of Booklet 11

11.1 Background

11.2 Purposes of the Booklet 11.3 Review and Reflection

11.4 Modes of Teachers’ Professional Development – How Teachers Learn

11.5 Planning and Implementation

11.6 Building Communities of Practice at School Bibliography

1 2 2

6 17 21 28

11.1 Background

 There is an inseparable relationship between student learning outcomes and effectiveness of teachers. As the curriculum reform has advanced to the stage of ongoing renewal, teachers are expected to collaborate closely to implement the school curriculum with a view to enhancing learning outcomes and catering for the diverse needs of students.

 To closely respond to the macro and dynamic changes in various aspects, there is a need to continue with the major direction of preparing students to succeed in a knowledge-based, technologically advanced and increasingly globalised world. Teachers have assumed a more far-reaching role as the “facilitators” for helping students learn to learn to achieve whole-person development and lifelong learning.



 Enhancing the professional capabilities of teachers is fundamental to the realisation of the vision and mission of providing quality education for students. In the ongoing renewal of school curriculum, it is essential for schools to attach importance to the development of a culture of learning and sharing among teachers and a knowledge management system to facilitate the professional development of teachers.

11.2 Purposes of the Booklet

 To provide an overview of the progress of professional development of teachers over the last decade

 To offer different options and modes for professional development

 To share good practices on effective professional development of teachers

11.3 Review and Reflection

 Great importance has always been attached to teacher professional development in Hong Kong. A number of changes have been introduced to sustain a teaching profession of excellence over the last decade.

 The Committee on Professional Development of Teachers and Principals (COTAP), reconstituted from the former Advisory Committee on Teacher Education and Professional Qualifications (ACTEQ) since June 2013, has been promoting the professional development of teachers and principals across the continuum of the teaching profession, as well as advising the Government on the policies and measures in this aspect. Three dedicated sub-committees have been set up under COTAP to advise on the policies and measures relating to the three main domains of COTAP’s work, i.e. initial teacher education, teachers’ professional development and school leadership. An array of frameworks for the professional development of teachers, including the Teacher Induction Scheme (TIS), the Teachers’ Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Framework and the Teacher Competencies Framework (TCF), are put forth. More information on the COTAP is available at:



 In 2015, COTAP has identified three main targets as the direction for the professional development of teachers and school leaders in its First Progress Report: (a) to have school leadership and reflective culture strengthened; (b) to have teacher quality enhanced; and (c) to put in place a supportive environment for professional development. An overarching project T-excel@hk, which encompasses eight areas of focus that work collectively towards the targets, will be prioritised and implemented by phase to promote professional development of teachers. More information on T-excel@hk is available at:

Starting from the 2003/04 school year, the Chief Executive’s Award for Teaching Excellence (CEATE), with one of its aims of enhancing teachers’ professional development through fostering a culture of collaboration and sharing of good practices, has been launched to acknowledge outstanding teaching performance with an emphasis on the pursuit of excellence. More information on the CEATE is available at:

 To consolidate the experiences of professional development gained from the past decade, both good practices and areas for reflection are summarised as follows:

Good Practices

- Encouraging teachers’ participation and reaching a consensus with them about mapping out the policy and related activities for teacher professional development

- Devising school-based CPD policies according to the developmental needs of the school and teachers

- Considering teacher professional development as a long-term human resource strategy

- Implementing whole-school curriculum development through incorporating ideas and suggestions from teacher professional development programmes

- Aligning teacher professional development activities with the major concerns of the school and post-activity evaluation



- Establishing a mechanism of experience sharing for teachers who have completed external professional development activities

- Designating specific slots in the timetable for collaborative lesson planning for teachers

- Exploiting the use of information technology or other appropriate platforms to promote the sharing of professional knowledge and experience

- Creating an organisational learning atmosphere and encouraging teachers’ self- evaluation, peer evaluation, etc. to foster professional growth

- Referring to the Professional Development for Beginning Teachers – An Induction Tool Kit published by the then ACTEQ for setting up or improving school- based induction programmes - Combining collaborative lesson

planning and peer lesson observation, establishing clear focuses in observation, and further encouraging post-observation evaluation and discussion to enhance teaching effectiveness

- Devising teacher capacity enhancement plans for teachers’

sustainable development

- Organising joint events with other schools to enable teachers to take reference from successful experiences of other schools and gain insights

Areas for Reflection

- Strengthening the co-ordination among panels to avoid the overlapping of teacher professional development activities

- Supporting the running of teacher professional development activities by the school management

“The gift of being a master teacher is not the exclusive

domain of a blessed few.

Anyone can become a master teacher with the right kind of practice and

mindset… You want to raise your expectations of your students, but first you

have to raise your expectations of yourself.”

Robyn Jackson, ASCD book author



- Engaging different stakeholders (e.g. tertiary institutions, NGOs, professional organisations, school management) in planning and organising the professional development activities for teachers - Addressing teachers’ needs in the professional development

activities in consideration of their opinions and comments

- Avoiding teacher professional development activities to become routine and hence failing to address the specific areas of concern - Sustaining and deepening the positive impact and experience after

the end of external professional support services

- Making reference to the latest professional development frameworks, including CPD Framework and TCF available on the COTAP website to enhance the overall planning for developing professional competency of staff members

More information on good practices and areas for reflection is available at the following websites:

 Progress Report of COTAP eport_2015-en.pdf

 Continuing Professional Development of Teachers ment/development/cpd-teachers/index.html

 Inspection Annual Reports rts/insp-annual-reports/index.html



11.4 Modes of Teacher Professional Development – How Teachers Learn

 The professional development for teachers should include the following dimensions to enhance the professional capabilities of teachers and to enable them to tackle rapid changes in various aspects:

- Keeping updated

(e.g. support for new education policies)

- Experimentation

(e.g. implementation of new tasks in school, response to major concerns of the school)

- Reflective practice

(e.g. personal professional growth)

- Knowledge sharing

(e.g. building communities of practice)

- Innovation

(e.g. exploring new modes)

 Schools should provide opportunities for teachers to attend professional development programmes organised by the EDB.

Individually, teachers gain knowledge about content and pedagogy and learn how to make decisions regarding implementation and change.

Interpersonally, teachers learn through dialogues and collaboration with other teachers to further develop and support their own learning.

 Teachers should also be provided with opportunities to collaborate with others through various means including formal and informal meetings, discussion groups and mentorship, etc. Schools can make possible arrangements to promote collaboration among teachers, including arrangement of common free periods, provision of internal and external training courses, introduction of supportive induction programmes and use of professional development frameworks. Such practices are in line with the fact that adult learning can be effectively facilitated in the environment of on-the-job training as well as pull-out structured programmes. Collaborative, interactive and hands-on kinds of professional development activities are most likely to affect teaching positively. Teachers can also be encouraged to try out new



approaches in a trusting environment and be given opportunities to reflect on their efforts.

 The most useful professional development emphasises active teaching, assessment, observation and reflection. An environment which facilitates a strong collaborative relationship among teachers and allows everyone to contribute and learn is important. Professional development activities can involve active learning opportunities and hands-on work of teachers so as to allow them to transform and implement more effective instructional skills through practice, as well as to make further improvement through reflection. The nine underpinning factors are shown in Figure 11.1 for reference.

Figure 11.1 Nine Factors Underpinning Effective Professional Development (PD) (Earley & Porritt, 2010)



 Professional development programmes for teachers are often planned in response to the direction of the school development, the curriculum goals and priorities as well as the professional development needs of teachers. Professional development for teachers involves the personal, school and community levels, with the prime goal of enhancing student learning outcomes (see Figure11.2).

Figure 11.2 Teacher Professional Development at Different Levels

 With reference to the characteristics of how teachers learn, teacher professional development activities can take diverse modes, ranging from structured learning to other learning modes, which cover the personal, school and community levels (see Figure 11.3). At the personal level, in order to enhance the professional capacity, and be prepared for forging “distributed leadership” in the school, teachers could be encouraged to plan their own professional development according to their experience, specific requirements and personal learning goals. It is recommended that varied and balanced

Tips of putting teacher modelling into practice (Douglas, 2009):

 Provide examples to enable teachers to have accessible models of good practices.

 Create a safe environment for teachers to critically review and rehearse successful practices.

 Create a bank of good practices to allow submission of anonymous case study to promote a sharing culture.

 Establish boundaries without micro-management.



professional learning experiences that consist of both structured learning and other learning modes be arranged to satisfy the training needs of both teachers and schools.

Figure 11.3 Examples of Teacher Professional Development Modes

Levels Teacher School Community


Personal Growth


Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK/PCK)

Whole-school KLA/Subject EDB Others*

Structured Learning

Courses, conferences, seminars, talks & workshops

Teacher Development Day

Subject panel conference, e.g.

collaborative curriculum design

Training Calendar:

courses, seminars &


Courses, conferences, seminars, talks

& workshops Online courses,

e.g. MOOC


Higher education courses, and courses relevant to their teaching qualifications

Joint school events

Other Learning


Networks and social media

Become members of subject-related organisations (SROs)

Programme, pioneering projects, e.g.

Quality Education Fund (QEF)

Collaborative Research and Development (“Seed”) Projects

Visit other schools

Teacher induction scheme or mentorship programme

As guest speakers for other schools

Outbound or overseas educational visits

Collaborative lesson planning (CLP)

School-based Professional Support (SBPS) Programmes

School or district networks

Reading / Self-learning

Read professional articles, journals, etc.

Visit other schools, exchange

Peer lesson observation

Secondment, cross-grade posting scheme

School-based support

Publish articles, reports, books, etc.

Professional discourse

Learning communities

Collaborative analysis of students’ work/


Curriculum development visits

University- School Support Programmes (USP) Reflective


Peer learning Action learning Collegial participation in External School Review

Business- school partnership

Sabbatical leave

Learning circles,

Communities of Practice (CoPs)

Service to the education sector or community, e.g. as a guest speaker, a member of a working group



* Including school sponsoring bodies or universities, NGOs, other schools, other parties, etc.



Example 1: Collaborative Lesson Preparation and Peer Lesson Observation of S1 Chinese Teachers

School C implements collaborative lesson preparation and peer lesson observation for all Chinese teachers in S1.


 A teacher is assigned to be the co-ordinator for collaborative lesson preparation and peer lesson observation.

 The school management arranges two common free periods per week for all S1 Chinese teachers.

 During the common free periods, all S1 Chinese teachers have meetings on lesson plans, pedagogy, learning and teaching activities and assignments. Evaluation and follow-up work are also discussed.

 The participating teachers take turns to develop the lesson plans and try out related learning activities in class. Post-lesson meetings are arranged for evaluation and revision.

 The school invites a member of staff from the faculty of education of a university to provide professional support and feedback.

 The co-ordinator and participating teachers report the progress to the Principal and all teachers during the Staff Meetings and Staff Development Day.

 A learning and teaching package for S1 Chinese is developed and regularly reviewed.


 The participating teachers are more proactive in lesson preparation and professional exchange.

 The participating teachers are more reflective about their own teaching approach and more receptive to new pedagogies and ideas in learning and teaching.

 There is more co-operation and collaboration on lesson planning and evaluation among the participating teachers. They are more willing to “open up” their classroom for observation and professional exchange.



 Several teacher professional development frameworks catering for different development needs of teachers are provided as follows for schools’ reference:

Teacher Competencies Framework (TCF)

- Schools are encouraged to make their own modifications based on the TCF, which is generic in nature and provides a reference for teachers and their schools in identifying their professional development needs. The TCF is built on four core domains, namely

“Teaching and Learning”, “Student Development”, “School Development” and “Professional Relationships and Services” (see Figure 11.4). Each of these four domains is extended by four dimensions, highlighting important aspects of teachers’ work. Each dimension includes a number of strands and each strand has stage descriptors to enable individual teachers to make meaningful evaluation of their learning needs over a wide spectrum of professional experience. It also enables schools to address the professional development needs of their entire staff in a manner consistent with established theory and effective practice.

- Details of the generic TCF are available at: framework-and-stage-descriptors



Figure 11.4 An Overview of the Generic Teacher Competencies Framework Teaching and

Learning Domain

Student Development


School Development Domain

Professional Relationships and

Services Domain

• Subject matter knowledge

• Curriculum and

pedagogical content knowledge

• Teaching strategies and skills, use of language and multimedia

• Assessment and evaluation

• Student diverse needs in school

• Rapport with students

• Pastoral care for students

• Students’

different learning experiences

• School vision and mission, culture and ethos

• Policies, procedures and practices

• Home-school collaboration

• Responsiveness to societal changes

• Collaboration relationships within the school

• Teachers’

professional development

• Involvement in policies related to education

• Education-related community services and voluntary work

Six Core Values that Underpin the Whole Framework Belief that

all students can learn

Love and care for students

Respect for diversity

Commitment and dedication to

the profession

Collaboration, sharing and team


Passion for continuous learning

and excellence Basic Premise: Personal Growth and Development of Teachers

Teacher Professional Development Framework on Integrated Education (IE)

- To enhance the professional capacity of teachers in embracing learner diversity in the classroom and supporting students with special educational needs (SEN), the EDB launched a teacher development framework on integrated education. Under this framework, structured training courses pitched at the Basic, Advanced and Thematic Levels (BAT Courses) are offered for serving teachers (see Figure 11.5). Schools are encouraged to arrange teachers to attend the courses through strategic planning.



Figure 11.5 Training Targets for Teacher Professional Development Framework on Integrated Education

(to be achieved by the end of the 2019/20 School Year)

- Details of the BAT courses are available at:


- In addition to the BAT courses, teachers may attend the Professional Development Programme for Teachers (Catering for Diverse Learning Needs) organised by the Hong Kong Education University and other structured training courses on special education.

Professional Development Framework in Gifted Education (GE) - To meet the needs of schools and teachers, a clear pathway of

professional development is designed for teachers to facilitate sustainable development of gifted education in schools (see Figure 11.6). This framework adopts a driver's approach to enhancing the holistic planning of the school-based GE provisions across different KLAs of schools.



- Details of the “Professional Development Framework in Gifted Education” are available at: development/major-level-of-


Figure 11.6 Professional Development Framework in Gifted Education

 Various kinds of school-based support services are designed according to the development in education and the needs of the schools concerned. Schools may strategically enhance the professional capacity of teachers in curriculum leadership, learning and teaching strategies and assessment practices through participating in the following programmes:

- Collaborative Research and Development (“Seed”) Projects ( level-of-edu/seed/index.html)



- On-site Professional Support Services

- Mainland-Hong Kong Teachers Exchange and Collaboration Programme

- University-School Support Programme - Professional Development Schools Scheme

- Quality Education Fund Thematic Networks (QTNs) - IT in Education Centre of Excellence (CoE) Scheme

Details of the school-based professional support programmes are available at: secondary/applicable-to-primary-secondary/sbss/



Example 2: “Seed Project” on “From Interacting with Multimodal Texts to Creative Writing in the Junior Secondary English Classroom” (2014/15)


To investigate how to enhance students’

ability to write creatively through the effective use of multimodal texts Objectives:

To enhance English teachers’ knowledge and competence in developing students’

ability to write creatively in the multimodal context

Role of the “Seed” Schools:

• To work in collaboration with Curriculum Development Institute officers to develop students’ ability to write creatively through the effective use of multimodal texts

• To develop and try out teaching strategies, tasks and report on the project outcomes

• To collect evidence through various channels (e.g. observing lessons, video-recording tryout lessons, interviewing

students/teachers) for evaluation and improvement

• To disseminate good practices in the development of literacy skills in the multimodal context

Benefits for the “Seed” Schools:

• The students mastered multimodal literacy skills and demonstrated improvement in writing creatively.

• The project teachers were able to integrate the use of multimodal texts into the school English Language curriculum and devise effective learning, teaching and assessment strategies to support students in writing creatively.

• The “Seed” schools strengthened the culture of collaboration, and promoted teacher professional development.



11.5 Planning and Implementation

 The planning of an effective teacher professional development policy in schools at various levels is crucial as it ensures focused and sustainable capacity building of teachers for improving student learning outcomes.

 Under the framework of School Development and Accountability which requires schools to draw up their major concerns as the focus in their school development plans, the professional development of teachers would be a synergy for school development if the planning of teachers’ capacity building and the major concerns of the schools are well aligned.

 Schools may refer to Figures 11.7 to 11.10 for the teacher professional development planning tools, taking into account their needs and contexts.

Figure 11.7 Planning-Implementation-Evaluation (PIE)



Figure 11.8 Needs Analysis on Professional Development Needs


Importance (High, Medium,


Urgency (High, Medium,


Level of Involvement (Personal, Subject

Panel, Whole School)

Priority (1, 2, 3…)

Whole-school Curriculum Planning

STEM education

Language across the Curriculum (LaC)

Self-directed Learning

Embracing Learner Diversity

Figure 11.9 Importance-Urgency Matrix Urgency

Low High



3 1

(1st Priority)





Note: The priority (1, 2, 3 & 4) of professional development programmes should depend on their importance and urgency.

*These items are examples under the “Teaching and Learning Domain” of the Teacher Competencies Framework



Figure 11.10 Keep-Improve-Start-Stop (KISS) Analysis

 For planning the capacity building of new teachers including those new to the school and to the profession, schools may devise an

“Induction Completion Reference” (ICR) including school-based indicators to optimise their school-based teacher induction guide with reference to the “Professional Development for Beginning Teachers – An Induction Tool Kit” (see Figure 11.11).

 More information about the Professional Development for Beginning Teachers – An Induction Tool Kit is available at: raining-development/development/cpd-teachers/TIS_Tool%2 0Kit%20-%20Eng.doc



Figure 11.11 An Excerpt from “Induction Completion Reference (ICR)”–

Interim and Final Reviews (under the Teaching and Learning Domain)



(Has the mentee fulfilled the following?)

Core Optional

Interim Review Final Review

Reflection by Mentee

Remarks by Mentor

Reflection by Mentee

Remarks by Mentor

Dimension : Subject matter knowledge

Displays a basic command of content knowledge of the subjects assigned to teach, and just begins to show awareness of gaps and misconceptions in the basic subject content. Has sporadic and infrequent updating of subject knowledge.

Command of subject matter knowledge

- Show a basic command of subject matter knowledge in lesson preparation and delivery and through interaction with colleagues


Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Updating of subject matter knowledge and search for new subject knowledge

- Recognise the importance of updating subject- specific knowledge, trends and developments - Make attempts

at updating subject matter knowledge


Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Sharing and exchange of subject teaching practice

- Attend sharing and exchange sessions on specific subject areas in school when invited to


Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Yes Area(s) for development:

Note: Schools can adopt or adapt the “Professional Development for Beginning Teachers – An Induction Tool Kit” to meet their school-based needs.



11.6 Building Communities of Practice at School

 Communities of Practice (CoP) are “groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly” (Hueber, 2009). Recent studies have highlighted the importance of

teachers’ participation in such communities of practice in teachers’

empowerment through collaboration, as well as the

development of school cultures valuing shared responsibilities and values. There are three basic elements in the model of CoP, namely Domain, Community and Practice. In the context of a school,

the three elements forge together and facilitate the attainment of student learning outcomes (see Figure 11.12).

“Collegial interaction that is focused on student outcomes can help teachers integrate new learning into existing practice.”

International Academy of Education & UNESCO, 2008

Figure 11.12 Communities of Practice



Schools are recommended to adopt the measures below to build CoP at the school level:

- Sharing the responsibility of professional development between teachers and the management team to nurture CoP at school (see Figure 11.13), followed with co-owning the CoP;

Figure 11.13 Responsibilities of School Staff in CoP

Staff Personnel Responsibility


Head of Key Learning Area/

Subject Panel

Prefect of Studies


Vice Principal Role

Member Facilitator Change agent Supporter

Mission Share


Facilitate collaboration and development among KLAs/


Co-ordinate or catalyse interactions

Delegate and empower

Goal Setting Actively participate or contribute

Define the scope, prioritise and set expected outcomes

Co-ordinate subject panel tasks

Define objectives and areas of concern

Resources Make an optimal use of resources or share them

Thrash out programme budgeting plans and source relevant resources

Allocate resources

Approve budget, seek for new resources

Collaboration Co-construct pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) or technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK) for e- learning

Facilitate co- ordination at the subject panel level

Provide appropriate frameworks (e.g.

collaborative lesson planning sessions)

Create capacity for collaboration (including resources, staffing, timetabling)


Feedback Analyse Monitor Evaluate

- Cultivating a learning culture among teachers and the management team to create a shared vision;

- Establishing “distributed leadership” and encouraging the development of leadership in different domains;



- Offering room for teachers to establish the culture of equality, sharing and collaboration for forming different modes of CoP;

- Providing opportunities for teachers to share their knowledge gained from professional development experiences, followed by experimentation or action learning, etc.;

- Establishing enhancement of student learning outcomes as the common goal of CoP;

- Enriching professional development of teachers by participating in external professional learning circles/communities, e.g. the Quality Education Fund Thematic Networks (QTNs), University-School Support Programmes, IT in Education Centre of Excellence (CoE) Scheme; and

- Promoting knowledge management of schools by capturing, developing, sharing, and effectively using the good practices properly.

Example 3: Incorporate Knowledge Management (KM) Practices to Enhance Teachers’ Professional Development through Building up of a CoP at School

School D was one of the winners of the Hong Kong Most Admired Knowledge Enterprise (MAKE) Award 2013 which recognised the school’s effort in integrating information from different people for managing knowledge to build up a learning organisation. The school adopts the following KM practices to enhance their organisational effectiveness to adapt to changes, to capture, share and transfer knowledge, and particularly to foster teachers’ professional development.

 Information-based approach: to build up the school’s IT infrastructure to share information and knowledge

 The school portal is set up to provide a user-friendly interface, including academic and behavioural data analysis and administrative operation for all teachers.



 A complete picture of the analysis of students’ academic performance including raw data, analysis and overall ranking is provided for all teachers’ reference.

 All behavioural data, including student lateness record, uniform tidiness and homework submission analysis is integrated into a dashboard at the front page of the school portal for teachers’

easy and quick reference when they follow up on students’


 Subject teachers prepare results of uniform tests of each student showing the marks attained, full marks and the mean in each item, together with analysed information, e.g. mean, lower quartile, when compared with that of other students at the same level.

 Consistent taxonomy is used to organise files and folders of departments and committees for easy retrieval.

 Digital archive is set up with functions to trace the versions of documents and input tags to facilitate searching and collaboration.

 Data from the above aspects are collected, analysed and studied via the system to produce useful information for the school to take actions to improve the overall performance.

 People/interaction-based approach: to establish CoPs by grouping teachers together to discuss and share their knowledge

 Lesson study which aims at improving the quality of learning and teaching is conducted. A group of teachers work together to set goals, develop lesson plans, deliver and observe lessons and conduct post lesson conferencing. This enables teachers to discuss, reflect on and improve their practice over time.

 A number of CoPs on specific topics (e.g. handling students with autism in classroom, using multimedia in teaching and voice protection workshop) have been organised and sustained in these years. Teachers share among themselves problems encountered in their daily work. Such CoPs which break through the barriers of subject departments facilitate knowledge sharing.



Positive Impacts

 The information-based approach and system provide data and information to teachers for feedback.

 A culture of sharing and collaboration is established.

 Teachers’ tacit knowledge is shared more easily and in turn built up intellectual capital of all teachers.

 Teachers’ sense of ownership and belonging is enhanced through active participation in the above processes.

 Individual knowledge is able to transfer to organisational knowledge which helps build up a learning organisation.

Example 4: Establishment of Learning Networks through the IT in Education Centre of Excellence (CoE) Scheme

The IT in Education Centre of Excellence (CoE) Scheme has been established since the 2002/03 school year, with an aim to facilitate the setting up of CoPs for sharing, support and innovation. Professional sharing in the form of pull-out programmes and on-site support are delivered. The scope covers pedagogical, technological, e-leadership as well as e-safety aspects related to the implementation of IT in Education.

Establishment of Learning Networks at All Levels Intra-school Learning Network:

 School E, which is a secondary school in Tai Po, requested for support in particular for adopting e-learning in the Chinese Language subject from CoE schools in the 2010/11 school year.

Blogs were first used in the school and their learning and teaching effectiveness spreads among teachers of other subjects. Sharing and lesson observations within school were then arranged to follow up teachers’ interest. Teachers’ enthusiasm was further boosted when the school became a CoE school in Chinese Language in the 2013/14 school year. Two teachers were seconded to the EDB under the CoE Scheme. Other teachers from the school were more eager to learn from these seconded teachers, and to know more about their experiences in supporting other schools as well as their exposure in



the “outside” world. Working as a team, other teachers were engaged in trying out new technologies and helped the two seconded teachers to offer support to other schools. With such positive support from teachers, e-learning has become a priority theme in the three-year school plan starting from the 2015/16 school year.

Inter-school Learning Network:

 School E has been a CoE school since the 2013/14 school year. With the enthusiasm of the teachers in this school, support is offered for a number of subjects other than Chinese Language. Learning networks of various subjects are formed to facilitate exchange of pedagogical strategies and teaching resources. Furthermore, School E provides professional support to another school, School F, and the professional capacities of teachers in School F have been enhanced.

Upon accumulation of sufficient implementation experience and good practices, School F has also become a CoE school which offers professional support to other schools. An inter-school learning network/CoP has been formed to sustain the professional development of teachers among schools.

Community Network to Sustain Changes and Innovation

CoE schools are widely connected to the IT industry through various governmental initiatives, connections with the industries and teachers’

associations. Visits and workshops are arranged locally and globally for inspiration and collaboration purposes.

How does it work?

 It is crucial to have school leaders who empower teachers to participate in professional development activities through creating space, promoting a sharing culture and providing necessary resources and support.

 Learning networks are established in various forms of school partnerships such as with IT industry, with teachers’ associations, and with other primary and secondary schools in the context of e- learning and various subject areas. This cultivates regional support,



local support, a sharing culture and innovation among relevant sectors.

 The IT industry and teachers’ associations play an important role to mobilise changes and support to CoE schools.

 CoE schools also act as catalysts, in various scales, to sustain the momentum within the schools themselves and in other schools which newly adopt e-learning in their school curricula.

Details of the CoE Scheme are available at:

Quality Education Fund Thematic Networks (QTNs)

 The QEF Thematic Network was initiated in 2006 to disseminate good practices derived from QEF projects and promote professional sharing through networking different schools and educational bodies. Various QTNs have been established since then, e.g. Gifted Education, Serving Students with Dyslexia, Drama in Education, Media Arts (Film Art), Project Learning, Healthy Schools, Chinese Language, Student Support, Support for Diverse Learning Needs (Reading and Writing) in Junior Secondary Schools and English Language (Primary).

 The support services under the QTNs are provided by the respective co-ordinators and the mode of support varies. Schools can apply to the co-ordinators direct and visit the QEF Cyber Resource Centre ( for the latest details.

Reflective Question

What are the necessary qualities for cultivating CoP at your school and what are the areas for improvement?



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