CROÍ Research series launched by Teaching Council

The Teaching Council has today launched a comprehensive research series aimed at promoting a wider understanding of the research that teachers do to support innovation in teaching and learning. The CROĺ Research Series (Collaboration and Research for Ongoing Innovation) draws together a number of strands of the Council’s work which will encourage teachers’ engagement with research as well as providing support to teachers who undertake research.

Registered teachers now have access to a range of research supports including webinars, research e-zines, an annual Researchmeet, shared learning days, as well as free access to an online education package of journals and e-books.

Speaking at today’s launch, Deputy Chairperson of the Teaching Council Sean McMahon said: “Promoting a culture of shared learning in which research and leading practice is encouraged and applied within the classroom setting is an important objective for the Council. The level of engagement by teachers in the Council’s initiatives to support and promote research is most impressive, from participation in webinars hosted by the Council to attending shared learning days and participating in Researchmeets”.

“I firmly believe that this engagement with research will support and advance the professional development of teachers, and will enhance the quality of learning experiences which our children, young people and adult learners continue to enjoy in our classrooms”, added Mr McMahon.

Teaching Council Director Tomás Ó Ruairc said: “From reflecting on their professional practice every day at an individual level, to collaborating with colleagues on more formal research projects, teachers engage with research every day. They work hard to ensure that such research has practical impact where it matters the most – in classrooms and schools around the country. Through launching the CROĺ Research Series, the Teaching Council is seeking to give even greater impetus to this work. We also wish to inform parents and the wider public about the quality of research that is out there. Our hope is that CROÍ will make the implicit explicit and acknowledge that research belongs at the heart of teaching and learning.”

CROĺ was officially launched today by Professor Michael Fullan, former dean of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education and Special Policy Adviser in Education to the Premier of Ontario. Speaking via video link today, Professor Fullan noted the significant progress made in Ireland in promoting cultures of collaborative professionalism: “When a culture of collaborative professionalism permeates the system, it serves both individual and collective learning, as well as societal priorities. In that context, I am heartened by what I have seen to date of the Council’s work in this area. Having worked in Ireland for almost 15 years, I can see that real progress is being made there in building cultures of collaborative professionalism.  Through CROÍ and other endeavours, the Council is putting in place a coherent framework to encourage and nurture teachers’ deep learning, in collaboration not only with other teachers, but also with students and the educational research community more broadly. The key and exciting challenge for the Council and all stakeholders is to ensure that this is done to scale, and supported on an ongoing basis, so that it has real systemic impact that can be sustained into the future”.

The Teaching Council also launched its revised policy on Droichead at today’s event. Droichead is the professional induction model for newly qualified teachers. The Council has made a number of significant changes to the policy following feedback from teachers. The changes include clarifying that Droichead is a non-evaluative process; this means that neither principals, school colleagues nor external school colleagues will evaluate the new teacher. It also states that JobBridge cannot be used to access Droichead.

The Council has also announced that it will provide a Shared Learning Bursary for schools that wish to come together as Droichead shared learning networks.