Professional Learning

Professional Learning

For a learning organisation to effectively digitally transform, innovative and inspirational practices are needed (Kools & Stoll, 2016). Simply using technology is not transformative in itself. Digital transformation is about what a positive difference to education that technology can potentially offer and how we can harness that potential. The LEADing Lights Digital Transformation team inherently honours and celebrates the important leadership and efforts of all CEWA staff when delivering relevant and sustainable professional learning experiences.

Transformative, innovative teaching demands the equivalent from professional learning. Acknowledging that time spent in collaborative professional learning corresponds to levels of student learning (Jensen, Hunter, Sonnemann & Cooper, 2014), each professional learning event engineered by the digital transformation team is designed to deliver contextual and exceptional digital learning experience for CEWA staff. Specifically, high-quality professional development activities are longer in duration (contact hours plus follow-up), provide access to new technologies for teaching and learning, actively engage teachers in meaningful and relevant activities for their individual contexts, promote peer collaboration and community building, and have a clearly articulated and a common vision for student achievement (Adelman et al., 2002; NFIE, 1996; Porter et al., 20003; Saunders, 2014; Sparks, 1990; Sparks, 2002).

In seeking to facilitate CEWA’s Vision for Learning, LEADing Lights considers the quality relationships, place, space and technology, student engagement, learning design, and instructional range necessary to assist educators with professional learning goals (CEWA, 2017). All learning, including adopting new tools or practices, involves building from current patterns and stretching comfort zones. As we learn continually, we model lifelong learning and empathy for our students.

This website outlines the multiple modes of delivery of the professional learning being offered by LEADing Lights, the types of programs being offered and the partners we endorse to engage with the needs of schools.

Teams and OneNote has enabled teachers to streamline their teaching and easily deliver content to their students.

Matthew Ferrinda, St Helena Catholic School

Responsible, flexible, and sustainable

Professional learning is ultimately about empowering staff. Being able to expand and build upon new or existing capacities to digitally transform our classrooms, schools and programs means that it is the recipient of the professional learning who dictates the content, not the provider. The Digital Transformation team endeavours to communicate with school and system leaders to provide responsive professional learning that addresses identified digital targets. We can also offer help to leaders in identifying these targets using evidence based research tools.

The Digital Transformation team is dedicated to continuously improving professional learning from LEADing Lights across CEWA schools and the office, and places a high value on the feedback from staff to inform, review and make adjustments. Professional learning from the Digital Transformation team strives to acknowledge the contexts of participants and meet needs and expectations of support. Being regional or remote should not mean that the quality or quantity of digital professional learning suffers. The Digital Transformation team is committed to reaching each diocese in 2018 both in-person and virtually.

The digital professional learning needs of CEWA schools can range significantly depending on their level of organisational complexity and digital maturity. It is our commitment to liaise with all school leaders to offer adaptive professional learning experiences.

Professional learning for digital transformation must be differentiated: what is needed for one school or team may not be needed by others. Each person’s role expectations, strategic priorities and context play a large part in determining what type of professional support and learning experiences are valuable at any given time.

Catholic Education WA office teams also require a specialised approach to digital professional learning. We are committed to connecting with team leaders to work together to identify areas of need and to design and deliver custom professional learning experiences.

Choosing a professional learning pathway for your school or team can be achieved in multiple ways. We can support you to either select from the current events offered in the events calendar on the LEADing Lights website or help mutually coordinate a tailored solution for your preferred approach.

Want to check out our events for 2018?


Adelman, N., Donnelly, M.B., Dove, T., Tiffany-Morales, J., Wayne, A., & Zucker, A. (2002). The integrated studies of educational technology: Professional development and teachers’ use of technology. Arlington, VA: SRI International.

Catholic Education Commission of Western Australia. (2009). Bishop’s Mandate. Accessed from:

Catholic Education Western Australia. (2017). Transforming learning for all: Our vision for learning. CEWA.

Dinham, S. (2016). Leading learning and teaching. Camberwell, Victoria: Australian Council for Educational Research.

Hattie, J. (2009). Visible learning: A synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. London, England: Routledge.

Jensen, B., Hunter, J., Sonnemann, J. and Cooper, S. (2014). Making time for great teaching. Carlton, Australia: Grattan Institute.

Kools, M. & Stoll, L. (2016). What makes a school a learning organization? Education Working Paper No. 137. OECD: Paris.

NFIE. (1996). Teachers take charge of their learning: Transforming professional development for student success. Washington, D.C.:NFIE.

Porter, A., Garet, M., Desimone, L., & Birman, B. (2003). Providing effective professional development: Lessons from the Eisenhower program. Science Educator, 12(1), 23-40.

Saunders, R. (2014). Effectiveness of Research-Based Teacher Professional Development: Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 39(4), 166-184.

Sparks, D. (2002). Designing Powerful Professional Development for Teachers and Principals. Oxford, OH: National Staff Development Council.

Sparks, D., & Loucks-Horsley, S. (1990). Models of staff development. In W. R. Houston, M. Haberman, & J. Sikula (Eds.), Handbook of research on teacher education (pp.234-250). New York: Macmillan.