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Professional Update

Engagement in Professional Update became a requirement for all registered teachers from August 2014. The Professional Update process has been developed in consultation with key stakeholders.

The key purposes of Professional Update for teachers are:

  • To maintain and improve the quality of our teachers as outlined in the relevant Professional Standards and to enhance the impact that they have on pupils' learning.
  • To support, maintain and enhance teachers' continued professionalism and the reputation of the teaching profession in Scotland.

The key principles of Professional Update for teachers are:

  • A responsibility to consider their development needs.
  • An entitlement to a system of supportive professional review and development (PRD) which can:
    • Assist them to identify constructive ways to engage in self-evaluation and professional learning in order to maintain and enhance professional knowledge, skills and practice;
    • Provide access to professional learning experiences which can develop and enhance professional practice as well as addressing those areas identified as requiring support;
    • Help them to manage change; and
    • Offer a focus on ways in which they can enhance their careers.

Supporting teachers

The direction of Professional Update is clear - it's based on effective, consistent Professional Review and Development and high-quality professional learning focused on outcomes for a teacher's own development as well as aiming to improve outcomes for children and young people.

Professional Update focuses on professional learning and continuous improvement, rather than determining whether or not a teacher is, or has remained, competent. In line with the GTCS Framework on Teacher Competence, competence cases will continue to be handled by local authorities and employers in the first instance, with cases of alleged professional incompetence referred subsequently to GTC Scotland for resolution.

Professional Update helps to formalise teachers' regular professional learning and ongoing Professional Review and Development processes. Professional Update will help to formalise these processes.

Find out more about Professional Update and what it means for you


If you would like to ask a question which is not answered in our FAQ's, contact our Professional Learning and Development team
T: 0131 314 6000