This article examines the challenges of teacher development strategies in post-1994 South Africa by
arguing that school-based development initiatives address teachers’ specific development needs and that
it is imperative to understand the conditions under which these initiatives can have a positive impact on
teachers. A framework is developed through which to examine why TD initiatives evolve over time and why
teachers do not benefit equally from these. It illustrates this by reporting on some research findings on the
potential and limitations of school-based teacher development through a cluster case study, which could
be described as a South African version of a Professional Learning Community.