It's something I've written about and spoken about for a while but it might be starting to happen.
If you are reading this you already know about the benefit blogging teachers can have to share ideas between schools. If you linked to this blog via Twitter you know how powerful Twitter is for pointing you to the web spaces where the inspiration is to be found. You might find this from my LinkedIn page, in which can you are just more into grown up Social Networking!
My dream is all teachers have ideas worth sharing, but they can't all be published authors or conference speakers- they can all tweet and facebook their ideas and it's not much of a step to run a simple blog- like this one where my posts come up with no technical skill, I post by email.
Teaching School work is now bringing this dream to reality. Certainly my Teaching School Alliance (http://htsa.notredame-high.org.uk/) is already promoting professional networking through social media but the agencies like the National College, TDA, and several large universities are also talking about it. It's not that one person had an idea others have listened to, some of the best ideas pop up simultaneous from all sorts of places independently because they suddenly look really obvious- although I hope I've seeded it a bit myself.
Teaching Schools are aiming to turn themselves, and hopefully the schools their work with, into laboratories of teaching with everyone in them being at least a reflective practitioner who thinks about what they do and how it could be improved, but many actually more formally studying their own practice and doing research- increasingly with masters level credits from a university partner and the teaching schools being tasked to take on more formal Research and Development roles with the National College.
By getting teachers tweeting, facebooking and blogging with each other ideas can flow, debates can happen and expertise can be found and quizzed in person. You all know this, otherwise you wouldn't have found this, but now the educational establishment is looking at how we bring all members of the profession into this, so far, secret paradise we all benefit from.
It wouldn't take much; if every teacher who sees the benefit of social networks and web2.0 tools for professional networking convinced 2 colleagues to join in it wouldn't take long to infect the whole workforce, but I can see how a short workshop with all ITT participants as part of their course would formally train the workforce and set of a new generation of teachers who study their own work and publish their own findings.
So, while it's good news that someone is planning to promote this in a big way, in the mean time tell two friends at work about the blogs and tweets that have been inspiring your work recently.