Professional Learning and Collaborative Planning 


To support personal and professional learning, we aim to develop an active community of continuous learners amongst SEK staff in order to: promote learning conversations among staff; to encourage active participation in personal and professional learning; foster good communications amongst staff; and ultimately improve student learning and achievement. To facilitate that, we have implemented our new Professional Learning and Collaborative Planning (PL&CP) structure.

The PL&CP structure is intended to foster professional learning opportunities for teachers, and to promote collaborative planning that improves the quality of learning and teaching for our students. Our aim is to nurture professional, independent, motivated staff who model lifelong learning. The structure of PL&CP allows staff to work collaboratively to improve learning and teaching by collaborating, sharing best practice and reflecting together.

Features of Professional Learning and Collaborative Planning

  • Shared values and vision – a shared focus on learning; and a culture of continuous improvement and transformation
  • Supportive and collaborative relations – there is a focus on collaboration, teamwork and team planning
  • Group and individual learning take place – people learn individually, and with and from each other
  • Collective responsibility – people take collective responsibility for promoting and supporting each other’s learning, collective support is given to those who need it
  • Collective creativity – courage, creativity and innovative thinking are encouraged
  • Reflective professional inquiry – research and inquiry form the basis for discussion, input from all members is valued, people share best practice
  • Openness, networks and partnerships – the staff is outward looking, and actively engaged in creating external partnerships and learning networks with other SEK schools and other organisations
  • Mutual trust, respect and support – there is mutual trust and respect amongst members of the group


Professional Learning and Collaborative Planning (PL&CP) engages and develops the commitment and talents of all individuals in a shared team effort that promotes student and staff learning of high quality. Commitment to shared values helps to develop a self-aware, self-critical, and increasingly effective professional community of staff. PL&CP engages staff in processes that encourage the seeking of new knowledge and ways of applying that knowledge to their learning, teaching, leadership and administrative roles. 


The collaboration that characterises PL&CP is a result of a process in which staff work together in teams to analyse and improve their teaching, learning and leadership practice, engaging in an ongoing cycle of inquiry that promotes deep learning. Often the best way to learn is simply to have a focussed conversation with colleagues. Collaborative conversations encourage team members to share goals, strategies, resources, questions, concerns and outcomes. These team discussions create opportunities for staff to develop relations with colleagues with whom they can share ideas, and are structured to improve the teaching, learning and leadership competencies of staff – individually and collectively. 

Professional Inquiries and SEK Playbook

Self-directed professional inquires form a key element of PL&CP. Professional inquires allow staff to choose an area of professional interest that they want to explore, and that will have an impact on their students´ learning. 

Through self-directed professional inquiries, staff have the opportunity to:

  • delve deeply into topics of their own professional interest and passion
  • create their own solutions to respond to the particular and everyday challenges they face when facilitating learning 
  • learn from their colleagues, and collaborate to implement their own innovative ideas
  • develop confidence as effective, competent professionals
  • have a genuine impact on the learning of their students
  • show the impact of their own solutions on student learning


There is the expectation that each member of staff will set a personal and professional target and will gather and present evidence of achieving that target, either individually or as a group, and will demonstrate impact on student learning. This will be done through the SEK Playbook. Please see more about how PL&CP is supported by the SEK Playbook here.

Creating time for Professional Learning and Collaborative Planning

To enable staff to participate in such a powerful process, we are creating dedicated PL&CP time, within the school week, for these important conversations to take place. In each SEK International School, the aim is to have two hours per week for PL&CP time when all staff can come together to develop their knowledge, skills and understanding. In SEK-Riyadh, the PL&CP sessions will take place on Tuesday afternoon, after early dismissal of classes.