The Indonesian system of school clusters (gugus) and teachers’ working groups (kelompok kerja guru or KKG) is well established, but is not yet used to best effect as a vehicle for teachers’ professional development. In 2017, the Ministry of Education and Culture issued guidelines for the development of the teacher working groups. The guidelines stress the role of the teachers’ working groups in supporting professional development and the urgent need for them to realize this role. Not withstanding this national policy, INOVASI school surveys found that teachers do not regard the teachers’ working groups as a forum for professional development. Their motivation to attend teachers’ working group meetings is generally low; the meetings are mainly used for developing test items and for routine tasks, such as completing requirements for education administration. There are few resource persons available to facilitate professional development, and the teachers’ working group is rarely used as a vehicle for in-service training or continuing professional development.

This October 2019 policy brief explores key strategic issues and policy recommendations for strengthening local teacher working groups (KKG) in Indonesia. The brief draws on INOVASI’s work and body of evidence to date, including emerging pilot endline data from Sumba Island, East Nusa Tenggara. A further update of the brief will be done in late 2019, with additional endline evidence from INOVASI’s four partner provinces.