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Individual Professional Development Plans
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What is an Individual Professional Development Plan (IPDP)?
Educators in Massachusetts who hold a professional license are required to develop an Individual Professional Development Plan in order to meet license renewal requirements.  Professional teaching licenses must be renewed every 5 years and the re-licensure process requires all educators to prepare an Individual Professional Development Plan for each renewal cycle. The plan must be consistent with the educational goals of the school and/or district and enhance the ability of the educator to improve student learning. Educators may need to modify the plan based on evolving school improvement goals.

While the principal must approve the IPDP, the responsibility for developing the plan and completing and documenting professional development activities belongs to the individual educator. Likewise, it is the educator's responsibility to monitor the plan for needed changes and for initiating a biennial plan review with the principal.

How do I develop an Individual Professional Development Plan?
Follow the steps below to develop an IPDP:

1. Review a copy of Westford's Professional Development Plan.

2. Review a copy of the School Improvement Plan for your school. You may additionally consult the WPS Strategic Plan (district improvement plan).

3. Review the required Professional Development Points (PDPs) for your license(s).

4. Formulate a set of individual professional growth goals consistent with district and school improvement goals.

5. Choose professional development activities that will help you meet your goals over the 5-year licensure renewal cycle.

6. Use the Westford IPDP Form to draft your professional development plan.

7. Share your plan with your Principal and secure her/his approval.

8. Complete the professional development activities and keep records.

9. Revisit your IPDP with your Principal every two years to review goals and amend the plan as necessary. You may add appropriate professional development activities as they become available during the 5-year cycle.

What criteria might the principal use in approving my IPDP?
IPDPs must be approved by the Principal or supervisor. Principals and supervisors may wish to ask the following questions when reviewing and approving Individual Professional Development Plans:

• To what extent are the individual professional growth goals aligned with school and/or district goals?
• How will the proposed professional development activities add to the educator's repertoire of skills and content knowledge?
• How is the plan designed to improve student learning?
• How is the educator participating in a range of meaningful and professionally relevant professional development?

What resources are available for developing my IPDP?
The table below contains links to the documents needed for developing an IPDP.

Note: Documents in PDF format can be opened using the free Adobe Reader software.

Click to Download
WPS Individual Professional Development Form
WPS Professional Development Plan
School Improvement Plans
(At School Web Site)
WPS Strategic Plan (District Improvement Plan)

For more information on requirements for educator license renewal, consult the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education web site at

The Massachusetts Teacher's Association also maintains a Recertification Help page at: