Real-time collaboration and continuous action
create ideal conditions for future success.
boilerplate image

Results of the OECD’s 2013 Teaching and Learning International Survey



Having trouble viewing the webcast? Contact Technical Assistance here.

The Alliance for Excellent Education Invites You to Attend a Webinar on

Results of the OECD’s 2013 Teaching and Learning International Survey

Andreas Schleicher, Director for Education and Skills, OECD
Stephanie Hirsh, Executive Director, Learning Forward
Bob Wise, President, Alliance for Excellent Education

Please join the Alliance for Excellent Education for a webinar on the results of the Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). American teachers participated for the first time in the 2013 round of TALIS, which focuses on teachers’ professional context and the conditions of the learning environment in which they teach. TALIS captures the perspectives of practitioners on key topics, including the degree to which teachers’ professional development needs are being met, insights into the beliefs and attitudes about teaching that teachers bring to the classroom, and the role that school leaders play in fostering an effective teaching and learning environment.

Andreas Schleicher will share the 2013 TALIS findings. Stephanie Hirsh will discuss the implications for improving teaching effectiveness in the United States and the efforts under way to create powerful professional learning systems. Bob Wise, president of the Alliance and former governor of West Virginia, will moderate the discussion. Panelists will also address questions submitted by viewers from across the nation.

To learn more about TALIS go to Teaching and Learning International Survey.

Support for this webinar comes from 


Register and submit questions for the webinar using the registration form below. After registering, you will receive an email confirmation. Please check your email settings to be sure they are set to receive emails from

Please direct questions concerning the webinar to

If you are unable to watch the webinar live, an archived version will be available at usually one or two days after the event airs.


Andreas Schleicher TALIS Presentation (PowerPoint)

Stephanie Hirsh Presentation (PowerPoint)

[Music Plays]


Bob:                            Good afternoon.  I’m Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of the state of West Virginia.  The Alliance is a nonprofit education and advocacy organization in Washington DC.  I’m pleased to join you today to discuss an important new report that sheds light on teachers and teaching, the most important school factor in improving student learning.  Joining us on set are two of the top newsmakers in this area.  I will introduce them in just a moment, but first I wanna bring you up to speed on this fast moving topic.  Today the Organization for Economic –




                                    Cooperation and Development, or better known as OECD, released the results of this report, the 2013 round of the Teaching and Learning International Survey, also known as TALIS, Teaching and Learning International Survey, referred to throughout as TALIS.  This survey provides valuable insights into teaching, teachers’ attitudes towards the teaching they do, the practices they adopt, and the factors related to their self-efficacy and job satisfaction.  Now this is very, very important news, and it is your opportunity to engage with the people that are responsible not only for the report but also making something happen with it.  Like most of our webcasts, the live event you are watching now is interactive, and we relish your participation.  If you would like to ask questions of our webinar guests, please do so by using the form below this video window.




                                    We will turn to your questions from time to time throughout this webinar.  You can also participate via Twitter.  We encourage you to tweet about this webinar using the #atalfared hash tag, or #oecdtalis that you’ll see in the left corner of the video window.  I also wanna thank the National Commission for Teaching for America’s Future, NCTAF, for the work that they did in making the presentation earlier on this report.  So I also want to extend an important thank-you to the Met Life foundation for its generous support of this webinar.  As I mentioned, this webinar focuses on the findings released today from the OECD 2013 TALIS.  This international survey for teaching and learning captures how teachers and school leaders in 34 –




                                    nations including the United States view their working conditions and learning environments.  TALIS also examines the role of school leaders and the support they give their teachers.  As many of you know, the OECD also administers the Program for International Student Assessment or PISA, which we released last December.  The PISA results show how well 15-year-olds do in reading literacy, mathematics, and science in the United States, and more than 65 nations participate in this.


TALIS is equally important because it offers insight into teachers’ beliefs, their instruction and the learning environment of schools in the United States and around the world.  The main goal is to provide valid information to help nations improve policies for developing a high quality teaching workforce.  Now I think something should be pointed out.  This is the first year –




                                    that U.S. teachers and school leaders have participated in TALIS, and so we wanna thank very much as well the United States Department of Education for making that possible.  The survey offers educators the opportunity to provide input about what supports effective teaching.  Teachers and school leaders are asked about initial teacher education, professional learning, school climate, school leadership, and teachers’ instructional beliefs and pedagogical practices.  Now it’s time to meet our guests.  First we have Andreas Schleicher.  Andreas is the director for education and skills at OECD.  He has done much over the past decade to educate Americans about what we can learn from international assessments.  Also joining us is Stephanie Hirsch, the executive director Learning Forward, formerly known as the National Staff and Development Council.




                                    The organization is more than 10,000 members and 40 state affiliates committed to increasing student achievement and educator effectiveness through standards based professional learning.  Together they bring a wealth of expertise on the key factors that are essential to powerful professional learning systems.  Andreas and Stephanie work with educators and policy leaders to help them apply the lessons from high performing systems to improve 21st century teaching and learning, and they are committed to integrating these internationally informed practices into American education to ensure all students have highly effective teachers capable of helping them reach their full potential.  So let me first as we start say that as Andreas makes his presentation he’s going to do an extensive Power Point presentation.  Now the first impulse, my impulse always is I’ve got to start taking notes; you don’t.  All of this is archived including his Power Point presentation and Stephanie’s.




                                    And so you’ll be able to go to the archived version and capture all of their Power Point presentations.  So just sit back and absorb.  You can detail and record later.  But Andreas, I wanna thank you very much for being here with us.  It’s been a big year actually if you think about it because we did PISA results in December, then the PIAC, which I never can remember the acronym, but you’ll remind us, on, uh, a little earlier, and now of course, uh, the TALIS results.  Big, big year for international findings.  So if you, please, start and bring us up to date on where we are with TALIS.


Andreas:                      First of all, thanks so much for hosting this.  TALIS is really the latest child in the family of OECD service.  The idea was to add the teacher’s voice to what we already know from students, from principals, and parents through our PISA service.  To do that we surveyed over 100,000 teachers from around the world, selecting random samples to ensure that the data are reliable and internationally comparable –




                                    using a standard international questionnaire.  You see a map of the countries taking part in the survey here, you can see, uh, it’s a fair bit of industrialized as well being covered.  Other countries still are not taking this survey.  The focus of all of this is about developing teaching as a profession.  We look at how we, how countries can recruit the best and brightest into the teaching profession, how they can support their teachers through continued development of practice, how they can retain and recognize effective teachers and develop career paths for professional growth, and last but not least how to improve the societal view of teaching as a profession.  And let me start with the latter.  This slide shows the share of teachers who agree or strongly agree that the teaching profession is a valued profession in society.  If you’re in Malaysia or Singapore or Korea or in –




                                    Abu Dhabi or in Finland, you see that 60 percent or more of the teachers say where teaching is valued by society.  If you go to the United States and many other countries it’s just about one-third of the teachers who feel that society values the profession.  You can say that’s just an opinion of teachers.  Does it really matter?  Well you know we have _____ of those data where it’s the results from PISA.


The horizontal axis shows you again the share of teachers believing that teaching is a valued profession.  On the vertical axis you see the share of mathematics top performers on PISA, and you can see there’s a pretty sort of strong relationship between those two dimensions.  Of course you know correlation doesn’t mean causation.  It could be that countries that are very, very good and where the society puts a great value on teaching that are very good at attracting great talent into teaching and then sort of that gets you better results.




                                    Or it could simply be that, you know, where teachers do a great job and students learn something, those are the PISA results.  Then society will reward them by attaching a higher value to teaching as a profession.  We don’t know.  What we do know is that the relationship is quite strong.  But let’s go a bit deeper.  [Clears throat]  How can countries develop 21st century teachers to prepare 21st century learners?  One thing we know is that the demand for skills in our society is changing quite rapidly.  Over the last decades we have seen a decline in the demand for manual skills, but the steepest decline on the U.S. labor market has been in what we call routine cognitive skills, the kind of things that are easy to teach, easy to test, are also easy to digitize, automate, and outsource.




                                    And that’s the biggest challenge to educators today.  The kind of things that are valued more by modern labor markets are non-routine analytic skills, the capacity of people not to reproduce what they have learned but to extrapolate from that and to apply the knowledge in novel situations.  And last but not least, social skills, higher premium attached to them.  So these are quite important shifts in what is valued in our economies, and that 21st century skills require 21st century _____ _____.  Let’s have a look at that.  On this slide you see the share of teachers who agree or strongly agree that their role as teachers is to facilitate own inquiry.  It’s nine out of ten.  Nine out of ten teachers also say that students should be allowed to think of solutions to practical problems themselves before the teacher shows them how they are solved.  And if you look at the United States, the picture is quite similar.




                                    U.S. teachers display quite similar pedagogical beliefs as their counterparts in other countries.  There’s some variability across countries.  You see that here on this slide.  Now if you are in Singapore or in Korea you tend to be at the high end of the spectrum, Israel as well, some other countries more at the, at the lower end, but overall teachers hold strong beliefs that are in line with the kind of 21st century pedographies.  But what you believe may not always happen in practice.  So we survey teachers as well on what they actually do in the classroom, and what you can see here is that these bars are a lot shorter.  For example, when you think about students working in small groups to come up with a joint solution to a problem, which is essential if you wanna foster the kind of social skills that are being valued, you can see that’s just about 40 percent of teachers on average who report using those practice frequently or always.




                                    Students work on projects that require at least one week to complete another of those dimensions that, uh, involve deep thinking and _____ and you can say it’s just about 30 percent of students.  Again there’s variability.  If you’re in Chile, if you’re in Brazil, in Norway, collaborative learning is sort of a prominent feature.  If you’re in Korea and Italy it’s a lot less, similar for other dimensions.  There’s variability, but overall we can say that the kind of pedagogical beliefs teachers hold don’t seem always _____ _____ into what they do according to their own reports.  But I wanted to show you one slide that is really quite interesting, and this goes back to our PISA data.  We measured student skills on two types of tasks.  One were tasks that required students to reproduce knowledge using multiple choice formats, and the other was where they had to actually construct their own –




                                    knowledge, and this is what changed between 2006 and 2009.  We saw actually some growth of students’ capacity to reproduce knowledge, and more growth of their capacity to construct knowledge in the OECD area.  But when you compare that with Japan, the country that was most successful in raising the share of students that were good at solving open-ended task, constructing knowledge, you could see a significant change and I’m showing you this because it tells us that it’s actually possible to change instructional classroom, uh, at scale.  But let’s go back to TALIS.  How do teachers actually collaborate?  Very, very important.  I mentioned I want to come back to this many times.  When it comes to informal exchange and coordination there’s a lot happening.  More than 40 percent of teachers say that they collaborate sort of and exchange information, uh at least once per month.




                                    But when it comes to the more deeper professional collaboration of team teaching, collaboration of professional development, joint activities, and classroom observations, you can see that those numbers get actually quite small.  It’s less than one in ten teachers reporting that they observe classrooms at least once per month.  In the U.S. it’s quite similar to other countries, a bit more of an emphasis on collaborative professional development, but the other patterns are quite similar.  There is a lot of variability in this.  Team teaching is very common in Japan, in Norway, in Denmark, in, um, Italy, less so in the Czech Republic and Croatia.  Collaborative professional development, Abu Dhabi, Singapore, Israel, Australia.  So there is variability on those dimensions, but overall we can see that professional collaboration is actually much less –




frequent than informal exchange and coordination.  Why do I say this?  Because teachers themselves say that the more frequently they participate in collaborative practices with their colleagues, the higher the levels of self-efficacy, the sense that they can make a difference for student learning, and also for in terms of job satisfaction.  So collaboration, professional autonomy in a collaborative culture seems really at the essence of much of what we see here.  Induction.


How do teachers get introduced to their jobs?  We know that those things are very important.  The blue dot shows you access to induction programs as reported by principals.  The white dot shows you the actual participation as reported by teachers.  So you look to Iceland and you can see there’s a big implementation gap.  Even where induction programs are available, few teachers make use of them.




                                    And that’s actually quite similar across most of the countries, uh, including the United States.  70 percent of the schools’ induction programs exist and – 90 percent of induction programs exist, but only 70 percent of the teachers are using them, but just few exceptions.  You get to Singapore where you can say 100 percent exist, 100 percent use them, but that’s the exception, not the rule.  Um, what do teachers say about the needs for professional development?


At the top of the list is teaching students with special needs, engaging with diversity, ICT skills for teaching, new technologies in the workplace, managing student behavior, classrooms and so on, and again you look at the United States, teachers express less of a need for professional development in most of these areas except perhaps for new technologies.  That is the case in other countries.  Again there is lots of variability in this.




                                    If you go to for example teaching students with special needs, Japan and Korea top the league.  Actually those two countries top the league on many of those dimensions, and that may surprise you because these are countries in which students do really, really well on the PISA comparisons, and still the teachers wanna progress further.  They have this desire to actually advance their profession to continue to learn.


So expressing a high need doesn’t necessarily mean that you do well, and expressing a limited need doesn’t mean that you are great on this.  Pedagogical competencies; again the Koreans, the Italians wanna _____ on that area.  In England there is less of a need expressed on that one.  When it comes to knowledge of the curriculum again you see Korea up front and Spain at the bottom.  So there’s a lot of variability in what teachers feel they need in terms of progressing in their profession.  We’ve also looked at the relationship between participation in professional development –




                                    here on the horizontal axis and the way in which this is supported.  You go to the countries in the green box that includes the United States where actually teachers participate a lot in professional development, and there are few financial barriers.  They get most of that for free.  You have another group of countries in the red box here where basically participation is less frequent and teachers have to pay for a higher share of that, and to see there’s very limited little of a relationship between those two, which tells you that actually often teachers are willing to pay if they find the right kind of professional development.


What’s the bottom line?  The impact of professional development.  What is quite interesting is regardless of the content, over three-quarters of teachers say that the professional development in which they have participated has had a positive impact on their teaching.  Let’s have a look at that in a bit more detail –




                                    But before that, let’s think about some of the barriers.  Why do teachers not participate in professional development?  The first thing that teachers say is workload.  Some say there are no incentives for participation, that professional development is too expensive, that there is no relevant professional development actually offered, and so on.  And again the U.S. is quite similar in this respect to most of the countries.  How do teachers actually learn about their work, and from whom do they learn?  Appraisal and feedback, very, very important sources of improvement.  Why do I say that?  [Clears throat]  Because that’s what teachers themselves say, but the numbers also say that just above half of the teachers say that receiving feedback on their teaching from one or two sources if happening, and only one in five receive feedback from three sources, and we know from –




                                    research that the multiple sources of feedback are key to the success of this.  Let’s have a look at the data in more detail.  For example, what happens when someone walks into a classroom and observes a teaching?  In the case of the U.S. you can say that 80, uh, 80 percent of the teachers do get feedback from their principals.  Principals seem to be a very important source of feedback in the Untied States and in some other countries as well.  School management much less so.  It’s just above 30 percent, and actually when it comes to other teachers the United States ranks quite low on the scale.  So teachers do not learn very frequently from colleagues about what happens in their classrooms.  When you go to the right side of the slide you find for example that in Korea, uh, colleagues, your fellow teachers are the most important source to learn how to improve your class from those observation studies.




                                    So the sources of feedback vary as does the frequency of feedback.  So who is never receiving feedback?  For example when it comes to the analysis of student test scores.  This just about less than 40 percent in the United States.  In other countries this number is higher, but consider those numbers high basically means that there’s never been feedback coming from those sources.


Assessment of content knowledge, here you are above 50 percent, and direct classroom observation, that’s where teacher, uh, teachers get consistent feedback in the case of the United States, but again most countries could be doing a lot better in making sure that teachers have the opportunity to receive the kind of feedback they need to improve their practices.  Why do I say this?  Because according to teachers [clears throat] feedback seems to have an important impact on their personal, pedagogical –




                                    and professional development.  You can see that on this slide here in terms of the percentage of teachers who say that feedback had a moderate or large positive impact on various dimensions: personal, pedagogical, and professional.  In most cases it’s the majority of teachers who say that feedback has really helped them to actually become better pedagogically and also in terms of job motivation and job satisfaction.  In the United States, um, has a similar pattern, but overall it seems that feedback has less of an influence on those kinds of dimensions than it has on average across countries.  What are the consequences of feedback?  What’s done most frequently is that a development or training plan is established to improve the work as a teacher.  It happens in around 60 percent of the cases.




                                    And mentor is a point to help teachers improve their teaching.  Half of the teachers say that that’s, they agree or strongly agree with that.  Teacher appraisal and feedback have little impact upon the way teachers teach in the classroom.  More than 40 percent of teachers believe that.  Most worryingly, less than 40 percent of the teachers say that the best performing teachers in the school receive the greatest recognition, and just about 30 percent of the teachers say that if a teacher is consistently underperforming he or she will be dismissed.  You can compare that with the U.S. and again you can see similar patterns except for the last dimension.  There’s variability across countries on most of these dimensions.  For example, if you are in Singapore or in Poland, most teachers will tell you that the best performing teachers in the school always gets the greatest recognition.  There seems to be a strong link between –




                                    performance and recognition.  If you’re in the Netherlands, in Belgium, in Spain or in Norway that’s less than 20 percent, and consistent underperformance has a lot of consequences.  In Chile according to the teachers there are little consequence in Japan, in the Netherlands, or in Norway.  So those things vary, but overall the link between feedback and careers and also recognition don’t seem to be overly strong.  Let’s have a look at the classroom environment.  The first thing that you might want to look at is how do teachers spend their time.  If you do that you’ll see that in the United States teaching hours are long.  Teachers spend 27 hours teaching a week as compared with the average of 19 hours.  For the rest, you know, their time is divided quite similarly –




                                    except for other tasks where U.S. teachers say they spend a lot more time than other countries.  But the main driver of the difference is really the amount of hours that teachers in the U.S. teach.  That’s despite significant spending on education, the way the resources are allocated, the fact that only a relatively smaller share of resources in the U.S. actually makes it to the classroom, that classes are typically small means that teachers have to work long hours even for moderate pay.  You can look at what teachers do beyond teaching in a comparative way.  If you are in Finland you would spend just half an hour or so on school management.  If you are in Malaysia it’s over five hours.  Communication with parents.  In Flanders that’s not a big task for teachers.  In Abu Dhabi, teachers are expected to invest a lot and that’s in Japan too.  Um, student counseling.  If you are career –




                                    you would be expected to spend four hours on this.  Administrative work; if you are in Finland you are lucky.  You’ll spend just about an hour on this.  If you are in Korea it’s six hours.  So the work schedule of teachers looks actually quite different across countries.  It’s a lot I think [clears throat] we can see from this.  How do teachers assess student learning?  Observation of students working on a particular task and providing immediate feedback.  That seems to be the most prevalent form of assessment.  Reported by 8 out of 10 teachers as being used frequently or in nearly all lessons.  Developing and administering their own assessment, also that is very common, provide written feedback _____ _____, then you get sort of to individual students answering questions in front of the class, and half of the time administering your standardized test, 40 percent, and –




                                    let students evaluate their own progress also around 40 percent.  The U.S. is similar in this except that it used less standardized tests, fewer standardized tests in the classroom than teachers in other countries.  So last but not least, what do teachers think about their job?  This is actually encouraging.  All in all you have nine out of ten teachers who say they are satisfied with their job.


You have nine out of ten teachers say they enjoy working at their school, and you have eight out of ten teachers that say they would recommend their school as a great place to work.  And the picture in the U.S. is slightly less positive, but overall you can see that the vast majority of teachers, basically 90, close to 90 percent of teachers really love their job according to their own reports.  What do they – and again there is variability across countries but not that much.  Generally the numbers are quite high.




                                    What about satisfaction with the teaching profession?  Again we can say almost 80 percent of the teachers say that the advantages of being a teacher clearly outweigh the disadvantages, and the same number says that “If I could decide again, I would still choose to work as a teacher.”  The pictures in the U.S., the numbers in the U.S. are even higher.  Over 80 percent of teachers say that their profession basically is highly satisfactory.  There’s some variability across countries.  Now if you are in Spain you get close to 90 percent.  If you get to Sweden you know just about half of the teachers would make that choice again today.  We have already talked about several of the factors that drive teacher satisfaction.  I wanna show you a couple, which do not seem to be related to teacher satisfaction –




                                    and one of them is class size.  You can see that our measure of job satisfaction is actually quite constant whether you teach a class of 15 students or less or 35 students or more, and that’s true also for the United States.  On the other hand when you look at the share of students with behavioral problems as reported by students you can really see as that share increases, job satisfaction declines, and that’s true also in the United States.  So it doesn’t seem to be the number of students in the class but the type of students that relate very closely to job satisfaction, highlighting the need to actually invest in classroom management and those types of skills that are related to this.  Last but not least, for the majority of countries, few countries attract the most experience teachers into the most challenging classrooms.  That’s basically an issue, which most –




OECD countries still have a lot of homework to do to ensure that basically the expertise is aligned with the challenges.  The best teachers are where they can make most of the difference.  Let’s have a look at experience as such.  Uh, this is basically the number of years that, um, people, teachers have been teaching.  You can see in Estonia this number gets high.  In the United States they are comparably small.  This is because there is so much mobility.  Many, many teachers do not stay as long in their job as is the case in other countries.


Of course teaching is only one educational job.  You need to add to this the experience that they have in other educational roles, and then they might also have other types of work experience.  In fact, that’s quite frequently the case in the U.S. and so on.  We can also look at the number of years the teachers have spent in the school in which they currently teach.  If you look to Japan and Korea for example, teachers move schools quite frequently.  That’s part of a deliberate policy to spread the teaching –




                                    expertise but also to create opportunities for teachers to learn in other environments from other teachers, with other teachers.  If you are in Flanders, in Belgium, you would only typically have taught in the school where you currently are.  There’s very limited mobility.  So we can see that too varies quite considerably across countries.  How confident do teachers feel in their abilities and how does it relate to experience?  Generally what we see is that the longer teachers stay in the profession, the more confident they are in their own abilities, which is probably what you would expect.  The picture looks a little bit different for the United States for teachers who have been in service for a long time, but overall there’s a rise up to 25 years on this dimension.  I wanna conclude the presentation, uh, with the issue of social diversity.  Social context is an issue in most of the countries.  Here in the case of Mexico you can see that students –




                                    in the lowest decile of social background marked in red performed considerably lower, uh, lower on our PISA test than students in the highest decile, the students marked in green, and the same is true in other countries.  In fact, if you’re in Chile, the lowest decile of students would be doing worse than those in Mexico, and the highest decile would do better.  But then when you look at this across countries you see something really interesting.  You can see that those red dots actually end up at very different points.


The red dots are the kids from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.  They have the same social background across countries, but they display very different levels of performance.  If you take the top performer Shana here you can see that the most disadvantaged children in Shanghai, very poor children, outperform the children of professionals in many other countries including the United States, and this tell us that poverty is not destiny.




                                    Social background is a barrier in most countries, but some countries show that actually this barrier can be overcome and effective teaching and ineffective allocation of teacher talent to those challenges is the, is the essential conditions for this.  Thank you very much.


Bob:                            Thank you, Andreas.  There’s so much to dig into here, and I just wanna remind all of our viewers that this Power Point display, uh, will be archived.  I find with an Andreas Schleicher Power Point I’m data mining it, uh, for weeks afterwards.  It is archived and you’ll be able to have access to it.  A number of points in here just to touch on a few of them and hopefully we’ll have time to talk about it, uh, one of the findings U.S. teachers do face considerable challenges in schools and the extent to which we’re on average more than 30 percent of students come from low-income homes.  Uh, we can talk about that challenge and how that compares to their international counterparts.




                                    I guess what was of particular concern to me is that fewer U.S. teachers report that professional development has positive impacts on their teaching in comparison to their international counterparts, and the one that I hope we can come back to, uh, when we get into the question and answer is Mike, the, uh, one of the findings in here, I’m not sure it was on the Power Point, is that somewhere around half of our teachers in the United States don’t come out of the classroom.


In other words, they report that they do not engage in joint teaching or collaboration, and yet at a time when we’re trying to move all of our students to a deeper learning set of outcomes and experiences where, um, which is a result of, of, their ability to work together to involve themselves in team projects, to do problem solving, to do, take control of their learning, as somebody said at the panel discussion earlier, the behavior we want our students to have are we modeling as well for our teachers?




                                    And so how if we want these kind of outcomes, 21st century skills, how is it that we can do that if teacher, if we don’t have our teachers collaborating?  What can we do to encourage that?  So Stephanie, uh, that’s why I’m turning to you, uh, because you certainly have fast experience in this through your personal experience and what your organization does.  We want to, you’ve served as a teacher.  You’ve been a district administrator and now you’ve been the, you are the executive director of Learning Forward.  And so I really appreciate if you’d share your perspectives on the 2013 TALIS findings in relation to your organization’s work to improve professional learning, the teaching practice, and student learning and outcomes in the United States.


Stephanie:                   Thank you.  Um, first off I’ve got to say how excited we are that the U.S. is finally part of the TALIS results and also remind everybody that we need a lot more teachers participating.  So, um, that’ll be really exciting if we can even –




                                    get more teachers’ voice in it, and the opportunity to look at all the data, the different ways in which we can dissect the conversation around professional development, that’s really exciting as well and all the different ways in which people talk about it.  I look forward to actually digging in later and asking Andreas some more questions about, “Well what do they mean when they say they engage in this or that?”


But to respond to your question, Bob, um, so for, you know, for more than 20 years now, Learning Forward has advocated a vision for professional learning that says that the primary and most powerful professional learning for educators occurs at the school among teachers who are in teams who have the opportunity on a regularly scheduled basis to collaborate, problem solve, and learn, and one of the ways we hope to kind of codify that, um, across the U.S. and in other parts of the world as well was to –




                                    establish standards for professional learning, and so we were really fortunate.  Um, our first set of standards I think were released in 1995 and we had the involvement of more than 20 organizations in the U.S. in the development of those standards.  We updated them in 2001 and brought more organizations to the table, and then in 2011 actually with the support of the Met Life Foundation as well we were able to bring to the table 28 organizations.  Um, we surveyed across the world to try and make sure the language would represent how people talk about professional learning and we narrowed the standards to seven key standards of professional learning.  They define the essential elements, what’s necessary to ensure that educators have the kinds of professional learning experiences that lead to improvement in their practice as well as better results for students.




                                    So since working in the sphere of trying to advocate and help states adopt standards, we’ve had 20 states now adopt the new standard since 2011.  We have 20 states still operating under the old standards, and we, um, also at the same time we know that just adopting standards doesn’t mean that they’re automatically put into practice.  And so while we have a good picture of what effective professional learning requires, we don’t necessarily see enough of that in practice, which is represented in the, um, in the survey results as well.


Bob:                            So, um, uh, following up on that, ’cause you do work closely with states in designing professional learning as part of the implementation of the common core state standards.  So what are some of the important considerations for states to improve the impact of professional learning on instruction?




Stephanie:                   So we’ve had this great experience the last three years where we got to partner really deeply with one state and we’ve been working in partnership with Kentucky, and so, and you know Kentucky was out in front in implementing common core, and so we didn’t have to go into Kentucky and get buy-in to do things differently.  They were really, they recognized, Kentucky recognized that it wanted to improve its professional learning system, and so in partnership with a lot of leaders in Kentucky we were actually able to identify the six key elements of a comprehensive professional learning system, and work in collaboration with Kentucky to strengthen its professional learning system around those six key components.  I think there’s a slide that shows everyone those six components, but I’ll just say them really quickly and I bet you’ll recognize all of these –




                                    as critical components, but unfortunately sometimes people forget to include and address all of them.  The first one being the vision.  You’ve got to know what, why do you have professional learning?  Why are you investing in it?  What are you trying to accomplish with it?  Standards so that we know what assures everybody has, quality professional learning.  Um, the next one is a definition.  How are we going to talk about professional learning?  In TALIS we talk about informal learning and formal learning, so how does the state wanna talk about it?


How do they wanna make sure that teachers have the kinds of – are able to identify professional learning according to the way the state wants, will define it, so they can measure whether teachers are experiencing it that way or not?  Uh, resources are obviously very important, time, uh, support, technology, uh, teacher coaches, all of those are part of the resource system.  A state has to invest so that teachers have the kinds of professional learning experience that they need.




                                    And then also clarifying roles and responsibilities.  Um, what’s the role of the state superintendent?  What’s the role of the State Department?  What’s the role of higher ed?  And then you know in many of our states we have all of these regional service centers, so what’s the role they play and then everybody within the school system as well.  And then finally the last piece is assessment and evaluation.  How do we monitor and determine the impact of professional learning because so much of the dialogue in this country is about the fact that we have so little evidence about the effects of professional learning.


So a comprehensive system says, well, how are we gonna document that and talk about that?  Um, I have another slide that shows actually where, uh, comprehensive guide to states, so on their own they can work through all the steps and see where they are in developing a comprehensive system, and then I have another slide I think that has a lot of other resources to help them in implementing it.




                                    I also just wanna quickly give a shout out to the state of Washington because in this work in Kentucky we had six critical friend states and they came and gave us advice throughout the entire process and were encouraged to take and use whatever they wanted to, uh, back in their own states based on what they learned in the Kentucky process, and Washington is now going full force to what we call transformance professional learning system and kind of implement what Kentucky has put on the table, but Washington is doing it in great ways as well, and I know there are many other states that are really recognizing that, it’s like what you just said before you asked the question, how do they create systems of professional learning where teachers experience the kinds of professional learning that replicates what we’re asking teachers to do in the classroom?  If you’ve never experienced it, how can you walk into a classroom and teach that way?




Bob:                            So yeah, you’ve answered this partly, but my question really is so the progress that you see states making in designing effective professional learning systems, any additional shout-outs, uh, or general observations?


Stephanie:                   Well, so let me think a second.  Well you know, some of our other critical friends that did some great work, Utah has really reached out to teachers across the state and designed systems and support for all of their teachers and it seems like states have like adopted their own theory of actions about how they’re going to reach teachers in the field.  So there’s a big bet in a lot of states around networks and how do you make sure that every teacher has access to a network.  There’s big bets around teacher leadership in states where a lot of teacher voice groups are engaging other teachers –




                                    um, in learning about the new common core standards and designing great lessons to implement.  There are lots of national initiatives, investments made in protocols and strategies that are being really helpful to teachers.  Um, I think of a lot of states and districts that are using the literacy design, are members of the literacy design collaborative and the math design collaborative.  There’s, um, another great resource out there that lots of states are sponsoring, um, within their own state for their teachers.


There’s an organization called Learn Zillion.  I think you probably have heard about it, and so they’ll have these teacher fests in their states to sponsor developing great lessons and supporting collaboration.  I have a daughter who’s a Learn Zillion genius or whatever their, um, teacher leaders are called, and so I’ve learned about that through her.  There’s, and just other great ways that states are investing in –




                                    helping teachers make this transition to new, more challenging standards for students.


Bob:                            So before we turn to Andreas, um, you noted something I think is very important.  This is the first time that the United States has participated in TALIS, and Andreas, as I recall, when did TALIS start, um, and also if you would, and it may have been mentioned but I think it’s worth repeating, what teachers are actually being measured here or surveyed?


Andreas:                      It’s, um, we started in 2008 and the focus is on middle school teachers.


Bob:                            So our elementary teachers and high school teachers aren’t included in this survey, so everyone in here is a lower middle school teacher.  And in the United States, uh, how many schools participated and in turn teachers?


Andreas:                      We have about, um, 400 schools that are surveyed.  Now that’s a typical sample to get our best data.


Bob:                            And, in the United States, uh, as I recall we didn’t have quite the number –




                                    that other countries did, but we got a good enough sample.  Is that correct?


Andreas:                      The response for it doesn’t meet the OECD standards.  Uh, we have qualified the U.S. results, but there has been serious analysis to ensure that they are not biased and still a good representation of the teaching population.


Bob:                            But it sounds to me like work of organizations like mine and probably Stephanie’s is to see if we can increase that participation in the next, in the next go-around, because a lot of us pushed hard and we’re very appreciative of the secretary, uh, of education and the department for participating this time.  Now we wanna make sure that we come through on our end.


Stephanie:                   Can I clarify something real quick?


Bob:                            Sure.


Stephanie:                   Did you say it’s just middle school teachers?  I thought it was K-8.  So it’s six, seven, eight or it’s K-8


Andreas:                      It’s, uh, middle school really.


Stephanie:                   So it’s just six, seven, eight teachers?


Andreas:                      We have another sample in primary schooling, but the results are not included yet.


Stephanie:                   Okay.  All right.  Well thank you for sharing that.  That’s even, so that almost explains the, um, statistic on why –




                                    teachers in the U.S. reported more collaboration than we all expected, because think about the fact that more middle schools have established time for teachers to engage in teaming, and so that’s more common in middle schools.  It doesn’t mean what’s really happening in those teams, but it does to some degree describe why that number was higher than we all anticipated, so interesting.


Bob:                            So Andreas, if I could continue on that thread because this issue of collaboration and meaningful collaboration is very, very important I believe, on one hand, uh, I believe the report, the U.S. teachers reported that they were collaborating, and at the same time half say that they’re not coming out, that essentially they’re not team teaching or joint teaching in any sense.  Am I missing something?  Is there a disconnect?




Andreas:                      No.  I think that’s a – when it comes to issues of clinical experience, classroom observations, joint teaching, the U.S. does not do particularly well.  When it comes to collaborative professional development a lot seems to be happening, but it’s the first component that is really essential.  If you look to the highest performing countries, the clinical experience, leaning from other teachers, learning with other teachers is really at the center, and it starts in initial teacher training where a lot of that education actually happens in the school, and then in the school classroom observations these are the professional learning communities in a country like Singapore for example would be highly structured process.


You know they would videotape classrooms, they would put teachers around that, they would analyze what happened, they would analyze what they could be improving.  It’s not just, you know, informal exchange.  It’s a highly structured and organized process that doesn’t need to take a lot of time, but it is at a very high quality.


Bob:                            So I’m gonna ask this question of both of you.  I’ll start with Andreas.




                                    The, uh, both of you know the United States has launched a number of initiatives in the past to improve teaching and learning in alignment with rigorous internationally benchmarked standards.  So what do you see as some of the key findings from TALIS that can help guide policy makers as they shape policies and programs?


Andreas:                      I do believe it’s about creating systematic opportunities for teachers to learn with each other, from each other in a structured way.  That I think is really at the end together with great standards.  You know I mean if you can’t define a good teacher you’re never gonna get good teaching.


Bob:                            Stephanie?


Stephanie:                   Well I’m also curious about what do you think about the concept of defining standards for professional learning?  So –


Andreas:                      Yeah absolutely.  I think actually in many cases where those standards do not exist, you cannot expect that schools will actually organize that in a, in a sustained and systematic way and you know when those standards do not exist, that time gets used for other –




                                    purposes.  We all know this, so having clearly articulated standards and a rigorous implementation process is really key.


Stephanie:                   Yeah, and I think in los of states what happens is they adopt the standards, and I think policy makers do that because they wanna make sure teachers have quality professional learning and one of the ways they can do that is to say “Well we will adopt these standards.  It’s our promise to our teachers that we recognize and we want you to have it.”  And they stop short of then checking in to see, well, you know, we adopted those standards.  They check in around the, the standards they adopt for the students’ virtue of the assessments, but they don’t check in in terms of the quality of professional learning the teachers are having that they’ve said is important as well.  So when you ask for like what’s one policy move that leaders might consider, that might be one, and I did prepare one more slide.


Bob:                            Okay.


Stephanie:                   Well and it, it just has some things, some policy moves that –




                                    um, we’ve been thinking about that people can take in order to support more effective professional learning, and so some of the things that we suggested was that we have, and I call this kind of like the “not only.”  I mean yes, you can do this, but you might do this as well.  Um, so you go from requiring professional learning every time we adopt a new program.  We do that a lot in this country.  Instead of thinking about the implications of first adopting a new program and secondly how does the professional learning integrate with what it is we already have going.


So which is a real reason for advocating comprehensive systems of professional learning.  Um, I already said from just adopting standards for professional learning to adopting and assessing the impact of the standards, and giving resources necessary to support the implementation of the standards.  We’re really good at setting aside days, like you know states will debate “Should we add one or two days to the calendar?”




                                    instead of really helping districts and schools think about how to restructure time.  So we, if we want professional learning embedded in the school day, we have to find ways to help states figure out how to allow schools the opportunity to redesign the time that teachers work, how they use that work time.  And we’re really good at setting annual requirements for how many hours teachers need to document versus thinking about how do we want teachers to demonstrate that the professional learning has been helpful and that it has informed and impacted their practice.  And we’re good at seeking input from all the stakeholders at the table but not getting the input of the teacher leaders and others in the field who actually are impacted by those decisions, and so thinking about how we engage the voice of teachers when we think about how we make policies around professional learning.


Bob:                            So while we’re on that, so what is it that, if you might flesh out a little more, what school leaders –




                                    can do, and I believe policy, with policymakers, to create those school environments where that collaboration is possible?  I’ve been there.  It’s real easy to earmark, uh, another couple of hours every week for, uh, professional development opportunities or learning day or something along those lines.  Not much guarantee that positive work is being done, and so suggestions on both at the policy level but also the very real school level how, how we accomplish that?


Stephanie:                   So I’ll say two things and I’d love to hear what Andreas has to say and then maybe I’ll have some more to add.  I mean we do know one thing in the U.S. that we have lots and lots of examples of schools that get it right, that, where principals have a vision of collaborative learning for educators.  I think the first thing is we have to expect all of our school leaders to be instructional leaders and one of the things you do as an instructional leader is that you model your own engagement –




                                    in professional learning with your teachers as well as with your colleagues, and then you set the conditions that ensure that all teachers are expected to be learners as part of the workday as well.  So those are two things.  Um, how they get there is, you know, leadership.  It’s the superintendent.


Andreas:                      You know what’s really interesting, we did have a survey of principals as part of TALIS and that suggested actually instructional leadership does not feature very prominently in the training of principals.  The training of principals is really dominated by administrative work, whereas if you go to several of the high performing countries as a principal you are primarily an instructional leader.  You are there to build the human resources of the school.  You are there to sort of structure the learning of your teachers.


Bob:                            And what did, for the U.S., what did our principals report?


Andreas:                      It’s largely administrative.  It’s largely, it’s defined as a largely administrative role and not a professional role in the sense of _____ _____.


Bob:                            Well that leads naturally into Damien’s question from Alabama –




                                    who does ask, “What can we learn from TALIS regarding the professional learning that principals need to improve teaching and learning?”


Andreas:                      It is that.  It is the instructional leadership.  It’s sort of building the human capital in the school, the experience, equating and structuring the learning experience for teachers and, uh, that is, it’s about managing assessment evaluation practice.  All of that is what principals in many countries primarily do.


Stephanie:                   We also saw some data or emerging data on principals and giving feedback to teachers, and so I think in this country right now, you know, we’re really focused on we wanna give teachers meaningful feedback, but our principals don’t have the support yet on how you do that, and what kind of feedback is really going to help teachers get the kinds of information and help and support and lead to the kinds of professional learning that’s gonna help them improve.  And so I think another thing we need to look at is how are we going to – we need to invest in the principals –




                                    responsible for giving the feedback.


Andreas:                      You know what struck me from the data was that actually, uh, the feedback is primarily lacking from fellow teachers.


Stephanie:                   That’s what they want.  Yeah.


Andreas:                      The principals actually seem to be reporting back, but the teachers do not seem to get as much feedback from peers than is the case in other countries, which probably is also something that principals need to structure to provide the time and space for that to happen.


Bob:                            Don’t you have to provide a climate, set the climate and environment where that’s encouraged?


Stephanie:                   Yeah.


Andreas:                      An open climate in which sort of classroom observation is not seen as sort of an accountability instrument but as an improvement instrument.


Bob:                            So Andreas, I was struck by one of the slides and I wanna make sure I interpret it correctly.  The question was asked the extent of time you’re spending on standardized tests, and I thought I saw the United States teachers reporting that they were actually spending less time than, um, than their international peers.  So I guess my question is that certainly flies in the face of –




                                    what we like to say, what we believe here, uh, and so when that question is asked about standardized tests, is that applying to formative and summative assessments?


Andreas:                      Yeah, but it’s only to the tests that are managed by the teachers.  It doesn’t account for, for tests that are sort of externally administered.  Now that’s the caveat to make, which is a lot in the U.S., more than in other countries, but when it comes to tests done by the, by teachers themselves, that doesn’t seem to happen as much in the U.S. as it does in many countries.


Bob:                            Because then that would square with our perception.


Stephanie:                   Right.  That would be formative assessments.


Bob:                            That would be formative here.


Stephanie:                   But we have some movement around helping teachers, you know, develop better formative assessments, and I think, you know, we’re really hopeful about that as part of this, the new college and career ready standards.  That’s gonna have to be a regular part of teaching.


Bob:                            Was I also correct in one of the slides or perhaps the data that U.S. teachers were preparing a – I assume would be formative –




                                    formative assessments more than their international counterparts, or do the other, teachers in other parts of the world more involved in preparing assessments?


Andreas:                      Uh, well all of the test data that we report is all teacher prepared tests.  So it seems that in other countries there’s more time and attention devoted to this, that in the United States.


Bob:                            Okay, so then I’m wrong and, and did not see a – teachers outside the United States are spending more time working on preparing assessments than in the U.S.


Andreas:                      Yeah, but I think in most countries the use of tests is actually the least, one of the least categories.  I mean most of these observations is teachers have a lot of instruments they use to evaluate student learning outcomes of which tests in general feature rather at the low end.


Bob:                            So this may not surprise you that somebody from West Virginia gets the first question.  Um, so Silvia from West Virginia asks, “What do we know about the amount of time a teacher needs –




                                    to be engaged in intensive professional learning in order to affect, positively affect student learning?”  So yeah.


Stephanie:                   [Laughs] So that’s a, well I’m not sure we have a, well we do have one study, okay?  We’ve said, I mean the research has shown that in order to do, make substantive change in a teacher’s practice that they really need like 40 to 50 hours in that particular area, okay?  So we have that’s kind of been in the research for many, many years.  Um, what we advocate is that every teacher should have, um, 25 percent of the work week dedicated to powerful collaborative professional learning where they are doing the kinds of things that you’re describing happen in other countries where they’re looking at the data from their own formative assessments and where they’re determining their students’ needs, and from there determining what they need to learn and want to learn and how they’re going to learn it, um, and then taking time to learn, and then when they implement they’re in each other’s classrooms –




                                    giving support, ’cause in the U.S. as we saw in the data, teachers rarely go into other teachers’ classrooms and rarely get feedback on how something is working, um, and then they come back and talk about results, look at results and determine what do we need to do?  Do we need to continue along this cycle in this particular need or are we ready to move on to another priority?


Bob:                            So lots of good questions coming in.  Uh, Lisa Rose asks “What are the demographics of the American educators who participated in TALIS?”


Andreas:                      They have typically less experience than their counterparts in other countries because, uh, teacher mobility is high in the United States.  Many teachers move out of the teaching, more teachers move out of the profession than in other countries.  Uh, there’s more gender balance in the United States than many other countries.  In most other countries the teaching profession is becoming highly feminized.  That’s also the case in the U.S. but not as much.




                                    And, uh, what else can I say?  I think that’s –


Bob:                            Am I correct that the OECD does not look at race/ethnicity in its surveys?


Andreas:                      No, we have no data on that.  We have just age and gender.


Bob:                            Uh, so Josh asks from California, “Do TALIS explore what factors caused U.S. teachers to report high, such high levels of job satisfaction and career choice?”


Andreas:                      Well you know some of the drivers of job satisfaction are identified by this study.  The extent of professional collaboration is among them.  Uh, the kind and nature of the feedback that teachers get.  I mean there are a lot of issues that, uh, we can measure but obviously [clears throat] the _____ experience teachers have with the students, which I would imagine to be the largest source of job satisfaction, is hard to measure in a survey.  But overall I think what we can say is that teachers love their jobs even if they feel undervalued by society now.


Stephanie:                   Right.  I agree with that.  I think it’s just teachers are passionate and when they’re with their students and they have –




                                    the opportunity to influence lives.  That’s why they love teaching and that’s why they’re proud to be a teacher.


Bob:                            Uh, so question from Atlanta.  One of the slides about teacher induction availability and use, uh, refers to this.  “What type of induction is being referred there?”


Andreas:                      All the systems are different across countries.  Uh, it’s basically it could be mentoring, it could be a formal induction program, but it’s a sustained effort of the school to integrate teachers into the school and practice.


Bob:                            From Wisconsin Kate asks, “What percentage of U.S. teachers are out of field?”  That is teaching subjects for which they’ve received no training or certification, and how does this compare with other countries?  Is that in the survey?


Andreas:                      Yeah, unfortunately not.  We have not, uh, been able to measure that in the study.


Bob:                            Stephanie, any thoughts on that one?


Stephanie:                   Um, not in particular, no. [Laughs]  I can’t answer that one.


Andreas:                      One thing I could say is in many of the highest performing countries you could not possibly be out of field.




                                    It’s actually a requirement to be a math teacher to teach math, but I don’t have data on the relative shares here.


Stephanie:                   Wasn’t there a slide that said, that was specifically about, uh, teachers prepared, um, for teaching?


Andreas:                      Mm-hmm.


Stephanie:                   Yeah, and so it was like 100 percent in some countries that they were fully prepared and ready when they went in the classroom, and there was another slide that said in the U.S. a lesser percentage of our teachers were prepared.


Andreas:                      Yeah, but I think it’s not by subject area.


Stephanie:                   Okay.


Andreas:                      I don’t think we have the –


Bob:                            But thank you for setting up Alberto’s question from South Carolina because I think he goes right to that issue, which is “Does TALIS shed light on whether professional development should focus on teachers’ content expertise or the pedagogical practice?”  Does TALIS data indicate one being more important than the other?


Andreas:                      What’s interesting actually is that we asked the teachers themselves where they felt the greatest need of development and it was more the pedagogical components than the content.  The content actually was one of the least frequently cited categories.




Bob:                            Is that across the survey or –


Andreas:                      It’s pretty, pretty, I mean the patterns are pretty consistent across countries, and what’s interesting is the teachers who teach content best, I mean you go to East Asia, Singapore, you know, Japan, Korea, it’s also the teachers where teachers feel the greatest need for development in content, so they really wanna move further in that area, whereas you find other countries, Spain would be the extreme, where teachers, where content is not very well taught, at least it’s not very well learned, and teachers don’t feel any need to advance in this.  So it’s very hard to interpret those data, but when you ask teachers the dominant categories are engaging with student diversity and managing classroom, classroom behavior, integrating technology.  Those are the really, the big factors.


Bob:                            Uh, so Lori from Florida, “Teacher evaluation is common now in the United States.  What does TALIS tell us about the impact of feedback on improving teachers’ performance and practice?




                                    How can teacher appraisal systems in the U.S. be improved?”  Of course we can spend three webinars on this one just to start, but it is an incredibly important issue and came up in the panel discussion.  So balancing teacher, current teacher evaluations _____ in the U.S. with what’s being reported by TALIS as to what’s effective in teachers’ eyes.


Andreas:                      Well what the data show, and these are reports of teachers themselves that have appraisal and feedback have a very significant impact on the personal dimensions, professional dimensions, and pedagogical dimensions.  Teachers themselves feel that, uh, getting systematic feedback and appraisal actually improves pedagogical practice, leads to higher job satisfaction, and also improves professional behavior.  Uh, teacher evaluation seems to be an essential ingredient, but it’s typically teachers would sort of rate evaluation for improvement high.  It’s not necessarily sort of evaluation for accountability.  I think one should make a clear separation among the two here.


Stephanie:                   And I think in this country we’re finally trying to get –




                                    it right in many ways in terms of helping teachers get the feedback that they say they wanted for years and that they want to help them to identify the areas where they can improve.  I think one of our challenges right now is making sure that the evaluation cycle, the information from there feeds into the professional learning cycle and that teachers aren’t on one track and required to do something for evaluation purposes and then another track in their professional learning or even their school leadership team cycle.  They’ve established a whole other set of priorities and so they’re drawn in different directions in terms of getting the support they need in the areas where they want to improve and need to improve.


Andreas:                      Another dimension is recognition, feedback and recognition.  The fact that the majority of teachers do not believe that, you know, the best teachers get the best, the greatest recognition, that’s _____ _____.  I mean the links between, you know, evaluation and consequences, feedback and consequences seem to be still pretty weak in most countries.




Bob:                            So Mike from Tennessee asks, “What can the United States do to develop policies to attract teachers to more challenging schools and what are other countries doing to ensure that effective teachers are accurately, uh, distributed?”  My sense was from the survey that, uh, other nations have this problem as well.  Is that –


Andreas:                      The challenge is, uh, quite universal, but we know from PISA that some countries have become very good at that, but if you go to China for example most career path of teachers are modeled through improvement.  So actually if you’re a vice-principal in a high performing school and you wanna become principal then the system will tell you, well, first help us.  Turn around to low performing schools.  Same for the teacher.  Teachers, uh, teaching career has multiple stages and you advance from one to the next by really showing that you can work in very tough circumstances.  In Japan they move teachers around pretty much randomly, but you move a lot around so teaching expertise is at least distributed, uh, evenly.




                                    Uh, in most countries you have the reverse, that the most talented teachers end up in the easy-to-teach classrooms.  I think there’s a lot that, uh, that we can potentially do in developing incentive and support structures that actually get great talent to difficult classrooms.  The fact that some countries are getting this right shows it can be done.


Stephanie:                   Those are all really exciting ways to think about how you can structure, use policy to help incentivize teachers and leaders and principals to take on some of our most challenging situations.  I also wondered from the data, and I don’t know if there’s a correlation or that there was any correlation drawn, in schools with higher levels of collaboration that are schools in which people would traditionally say are tougher to teach is teacher mobility less, and do we see teachers attracted and willing to stay in those schools, and has any sort of collabora – have you done anything in terms of correlating that data?




Andreas:                      That’s something we should be able to do.  It’s a really intriguing question.


Stephanie:                   Yes.


Andreas:                      Whether the stability of the community is really influenced by those factors.  I think that’s a good thing.


Stephanie:                   That’s kind of my assumption that, because those schools that we have that outperform all other schools, you know what we talk about those really challenging situations, but they, you know, are the “break the odd” kind of school, those are schools where one of the factors we always see is that these are schools where professional learning and collaboration are really high, and so why do people stay in those schools?  It’s because of the leadership, because of the professional learning, because of the investment they’re making in the school.  So just something for us to think about.


Bob:                            So we just have a few minutes left.  Boy, a lot of good questions.  Steve from New Jersey asks, “Principals must follow strict assessment and accountability mandates in the United States.  Does TALIS tell us anything about whether more or less autonomy affects school performance or principals’ job satisfaction?”


Andreas:                      We have no measures of principal job satisfaction.




We do however see that if you look to high performing education systems they have considerable professional autonomy in the school, also on the substance, but they work in an environment of distributed leadership, of high degree of transparency, uh, so it’s about the more autonomy outperforming systems give to schools and school leaders, the stronger the system they build around it to ensure that there is good knowledge management and sharing.


Bob:                            So in that, I’ve seen some of the data that you’ve talked about before on that, as I recall though there’s also a factor in there of more autonomy with common over-arching standards.


Andreas:                      That’s right.  I mean that’s one of the –


Bob:                            Everyone knows the goal; now they get the autonomy to get there.


Andreas:                      You can actually see, I mean that’s not from TALIS but from the PISA results where you have autonomy without a shared understanding of what good performance is, autonomy actually works against you.  It is the combination of a clearly shared understanding of good performance standards together with autonomy that seems related to good school performance.




Bob:                            So in, in just the few minutes we have left, let me see if either one of you has a, a quick thought or summation that you’d like to give.  Um, Andreas, why don’t I turn to you first?  And particularly you know the U.S. so well.  Where do you see, how do you see, this is the first time the United States has implemented or administered TALIS in the United States.  We’ve got United States teachers responding.  Suggestions from the data for us?


Andreas:                      Well first of all I think what is very encouraging is the high degree of job satisfaction, the fact that teachers really love their job, wanna do it well, I think that’s something that is a very, very sort of rich capital to use.  Uh, these teachers could have better opportunities to professional development, that’s pretty clear, particularly with the peers and colleagues.  It’s a lot more scope for sort of creating opportunities, reviewing perhaps the structure of the working time of teachers.  The fact that the United States spends a lot of money on education, more so than other countries, suggests there should actually be, if the resources –




                                    are allocated, well there should be more opportunities to do the kind of things that we see in TALIS high performing countries doing.


Bob:                            And Stephanie, what do we need to do to apply this here in the United States?  You work on it every day.


Stephanie:                   Yeah.  You know the results are so exciting to look at and the fact that we have so many things happening in the U.S., and always our concern is that we need to take some time and examine how we are using our resources and how we’re allocating our time and our leaders toward professional learning, because we have a lot of professional learning that isn’t getting its intended impact and a lot of professional learning that could be improved to help teachers where they are today, and I think we know a lot about what is effective professional learning and just we don’t have enough of it in place, and TALIS can remind us that our teachers are pretty generous with us in the way they rate their professional learning, and they face incredible challenges, and we could do so much more with more effective professional learning –




                                    to help them be able to address those challenges and just in powerful ways.  There are great expectations on teachers right now and they deserve the professional learning that will help them meet those expectations for themselves and for their students.


Bob:                            Well thank, I wanna thank both of you very much.  I’m afraid we’re running out of time, but I wanna thank our panelists and of course our audience members for joining us today.  All of the, all of this webinar is archived, so if you missed any of today’s webinar you can watch archived video at  The video and the Power Point slides from today’s webinar will be available online on Monday.  Also of course let me note that the OECD report will be on the OECD website, I believe, and also I’m assuming the NCTAF website as well.  It, um, we’re gonna continue this discussion a lot more in the future.




                                    Uh, thank you again for joining us.  Have a great day.


[Music Plays]


[End of Audio]

Categories: International Comparisons, Teacher Effectiveness, Teacher Evaluations, Teacher Preparation, Teacher Quality, Teachers & Leaders

Action Academy

Welcome to the Alliance for Excellent Education’s Action Academy, an online learning community of education advocates. We invite you to create an account, expand your knowledge on the most pressing issues in education, and communicate with others who share your interests in education reform.

Register Now

or register for Action Academy below:

Join the Conversation

Your email is never published nor shared.

What is this?
Add 9 to 8 =
The simple math problem you are being asked to solve is necessary to help block spam submissions.



Every Child a Graduate. Every Child Prepared for Life.