Teaching is future-focused work. It is about preparing students to secure their own well-being—and our nation’s—in a dynamic global economy. Readying the next generation for college and careers is no simple charge. Teachers must help all students to master core content knowledge and become adept critical thinkers, collaborators, and communicators. To do
so effectively, teachers must devote significant time, energy, and effort to their own professional growth throughout their careers.
American schools invest substantially in teachers’ professional development annually, but mostly without significant impact. Considerable evidence suggests that formal professional development often misses the mark. The good news is that teachers, now more than ever, are also learning in a variety of informal ways. Systems just don’t yet have reliable ways of tracking or making the most of that growth.
A potential solution for strengthening professional development is at hand: micro-credentials for educators.