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Education: International Cooperation

Volume 506: debated on Wednesday 3 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what the average duration is of a Teachers' International Professional Development Programme visit; (318230)

(2) how many teachers and teaching assistants participated in Teachers' International Professional Development Programme visits to each county in each year since 2000.

Study visits taking place under the Teachers International Professional Development (TIPD) programme take place during half-term and other holiday periods. The majority of study visits last for five days, but for long-haul destinations the study visit may be extended to a maximum of 10 days.

There are three strands to the TIPD programme: local authority led study visits on a theme decided by the relevant local authority; school determined visits to examine a theme of study decided by the schools engaged; and a programme of study visits to developing countries jointly funded by the Department for Children, Schools and Families and the Department for International Development. The number of teachers taking part in study visits by country under each of these three strands is contained in tables, copies of which have been placed in the Libraries.

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) if he will place in the Library a copy of each (a) audit and (b) evaluation of the Teachers' International Professional Development programme undertaken or commissioned by his Department to date; (318231)

(2) what assessment he has made of the effectiveness in promoting best practice in schools in England of the Teachers' International Professional Development programme.

The Department commissioned the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) to conduct reviews of the Teachers International Professional Development (TIPD) programme, and evaluation reports were issued in 2002, 2003 and 2005. A further internal review of the TIPD programme reported in December 2006. Copies of these reports have been placed in the Library.

In 2009, the Department and the Department for International Development (DFID) commissioned a review of a range of international programmes funded by the two Departments. The review concluded that whilst the TIPD programme provided valuable professional development opportunities, efficiencies and improved outcomes could be achieved through streamlining the design and delivery of programmes. A formal public consultation on recommendations flowing from this review is planned for the near future.