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What is: CPD?

Continuous Professional Development (CPD) is the term for the learning activities that professionals engage in to increase their skills and enhance their abilities. Effective CPD means you need to honestly evaluate your abilities and knowledge, identifying where you may fall short, and then deciding on how to work on these areas.

The way we care for and teach children is constantly changing so, as practitioners, we can’t sit on our laurels and believe we know everything. There is always room for improvement and constantly assessing where you could expand your knowledge will not only benefit you, but also the children in your care.

The EYFS states that ongoing CPD is a requirement for practitioners “to ensure they offer quality learning and development experiences for children that continually improves”. Being able to evaluate your own strengths and weaknesses will increase personal confidence in your abilities and demonstrate to your setting manager your willingness to learn and improve.

Some examples of CPD:

  • Conferences
  • Online/in-person courses
  • In-setting staff training
  • Coaching/mentoring
Photo by Min An from Pexels

To help you start out assessing where you need more professional development, try the below questions:

  1. What qualifications, skills and knowledge do I need for my current role?
  2. Where am I lacking in knowledge/experience?
  3. How do I learn best? For example – online courses, shadowing a colleague or attending an in-person training session?
  4. What opportunities are available for me to work on these skills?
  5. Can my manager/supervisor help me find/attend/fund training courses?

Remember that CPD needs to be recorded so you have physical evidence of the steps you’ve taken to improve your work and knowledge. This will also allow you to evaluate what courses or learning styles are most beneficial to you, and act as a reminder of your new skills to help you implement them in your setting.

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