Helping teachers improve their instructional practice through high-quality professional learning opportunities is a key strategy for improving student academic, social, and emotional outcomes. Little is known about the professional learning activities teachers participate in over the summer.

This report begins to fill that gap by presenting data from the first nationally representative survey of teachers about their summer professional learning opportunities. It also presents data from a descriptive study of BellXcel Summer (BXS), an academic-focused summer program model for students that provides teachers with numerous professional learning opportunities, and compares BXS teachers’ perceptions of their summer professional learning experiences with those of teachers nationally. Exploring the possibilities of utilizing summer as a time for teacher professional learning is imperative in the wake of the coronavirus disease 2019, which has disrupted opportunities for school-year professional learning.

RAND’s American Educator Panels provide access to nationally representative samples of K–12 teachers, principals, and district leaders. Learn more about the panels, including how you can use them for your own surveys, at the AEP website.

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