Your CPD entitlements

ATL is completely committed to the further education of our members.

This is why, in negotiating with the government on the revised performance management system, we insisted that a clear statement of the support and professional development available to teachers had to accompany the setting of objectives for teachers with the performance management process.

One critical outcome, therefore, of every planning and review meeting should be an agreed programme of the continuing professional development (CPD) you need to achieve your objectives.

ATL provides members with an extensive programme of CPD:

England and Wales

An extensive guide to CPD is available on the Training and Development Agency website. It covers early professional development (EPD), as well as career goals such as passing the advanced skills teacher assessment. The website also includes a revised set of professional standards which set out the professional attributes, knowledge and understanding and skills expected at each stage of a teacher's career.

As a social partner, ATL played a major role in drafting the standards. They have been drawn up for the Secretary of State for Children, schools and Families and, together with revised performance management arrangements and the new national strategy for supporting teachers' CPD are part of the government's package of support for new teacher professionalism.

Northern Ireland

Guidance on the initial, induction and EPD stages of teacher education can be found in the Teacher Education Partnership Handbook. This draws together in one place guidance for student teachers, beginning teachers, teacher-tutors and others with a role in the three main stages of early teacher education.

It contains information on the roles and responsibilities of the various teacher education partners in Northern Ireland, higher education institutions, education and library boards, curriculum advisory and support services and schools in the three, integrated, stages of teacher education:

  • initial teacher education

  • the induction stage

  • the second and third years of teaching, referred to as early professional development (EPD).

It also contains the list of teacher competences.  Underlying the teacher competences are certain qualities of the teacher which enable them to employ the individual competences and apply them in a professional context.

CPD, and teacher education in general, is currently under review. Further information can be found in the Teacher Education Review section of the Department of Education Northern Ireland website.

As part of the wider Teacher Education Review, the General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland has published a guide called Teaching: the reflective profession. This sets out the 27 teacher competences that have been developed in consultation with a range of education partners and which supercede the competences listed in the Teacher Education Partnership Handbook.

Professional Qualification for Headship (Northern Ireland) and other leadership development programmes for senior managers and aspiring principals are provided by the Regional Training Unit (RTU) for Northern Ireland.


Professional review and development in Scotland is designed to allow teachers, with their managers, to identify their development needs for the coming year(s) and to agree a plan of CPD activity that will allow them to develop and enhance their skills and competences. A wealth of information about CPD is available from the CPD Scotland website.

As a starting point, download the FAQ about the professoinal review and development process.

Need further advice?

Your first point of contact is your ATL rep in your school or college. Your local ATL branch is also available to help with queries, or you can contact ATL's member advisors on tel: 020 7930 6441 or email us. Please have your membership number to hand when telephoning and include it with any correspondence - this will help us to answer your query more quickly.


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