Since the early 1990s, there has been a growing body of literature regarding the facilitation of deeper thinking among educators based on the opportunity for in-service professional development (Darling-Hammond, 2003; Garet, Porter, Desimone, Birman, & Yoon, 1999, 2001; Reeves, 2010; Smith & O’Day, 1991). In-service professional development provides teachers with the opportunity to consider alternative solutions to teaching and learning situations. Providing solid professional development is the goal of schools globally. This effort can be challenging to small private schools that are pouring as many resources as possible into the necessary materials and curricula for their students. Few budget resources are left over to provide the necessary professional development for teachers in these schools.
This project was born of a strong partnership between a church located in the Midwestern United States and a small mission school located in the Mexico City area. The mission school typically enrolls approximately 60 – 80 students who live in one of four children’s homes. The children have primarily been sent to the mission as orphans and typically have lived in poverty prior to their arrival. Many may have been to school only sporadically, if at all. The average age of the children enrolled in the school is ten years of age.
Reeves (2010) made a strong case for moving past teachers liking professional development sessions or presenters and moving toward assessing if the professional development activity has lasting impact on teaching and learning. While the positive assessment of long-term impact is the desired goal, it was also noteworthy that this particular professional development activity would not have a long-term impact on the teaching and learning occurring in this school if the participants’ feelings were discounted during the presentations.
Cook, Vickie S.
"The Effect of Professional Development on a Mexican Mission School: A Case Study,"
International Christian Community of Teacher Educators Journal: Vol. 7
, Article 4.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.georgefox.edu/icctej/vol7/iss1/4