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Why PLCs?

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Why PLCs?

  1. 1. Professional Learning Communities:The Power of Collaboration Heather Sullivan- FRHSD 2007
  2. 2. GOALS FOR TODAY <ul><li>Define PLC (it really is more than just another acronym to remember!) </li></ul><ul><li>Highlight the need for collaborative job-embedded professional learning opportunities in our school </li></ul><ul><li>Plan for teaming & collaboration in schools </li></ul>
  3. 3. Focused teacher learning opportunities enhance student learning.
  4. 4. <ul><li>They are NOT what we’ve been used to </li></ul><ul><li>They are NOT Prescriptive </li></ul><ul><li>They are NOT New </li></ul>What PLCs are NOT
  5. 5. Professional Learning Communities foster focused teacher learning
  6. 6. <ul><li>PLCs are an Infrastructure , or a way of working together, which results in continuous school improvement </li></ul><ul><li>PLCs are Empowering </li></ul><ul><li>PLCs are a way to Transform Professional Development </li></ul>What They Are
  7. 7. Transforming Professional Development
  8. 8. <ul><li>The very essence of a learning community is a focus on and a commitment to the learning of each student……if the organization is to become more effective in helping all students learn, the adults in the organization must be continually learning. </li></ul><ul><li> DuFour,Eaker, and Many (2006) </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>Shared and Supportive Leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Shared Values and Vision </li></ul><ul><li>Collective Learning and Application </li></ul><ul><li>Supportive Conditions </li></ul><ul><li>Shared Personal Practice </li></ul>PLC Attributes
  10. 10. <ul><li>In-School /After School </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Departmental/Cross-Curricular Groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Ex. CORE Team </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Asynchronous/Synchronous </li></ul><ul><li>In-Person/Virtual </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Moodle Pages, Wikis , etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Webinars , Web Conferences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>District-Based </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Specialized Networking Groups (NSTA, etc.) </li></ul></ul>Varied Context
  11. 11. <ul><li>Collaborative cultures, which by definition have close relationships, are indeed powerful. BUT, unless they are focused on the right things they may end up being powerfully wrong. </li></ul><ul><li>Michael Fullan </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>So, what will be the focus of our collaboration? </li></ul>
  13. 14. Why? How?
  14. 15. <ul><li>All educators can make a difference with All students </li></ul><ul><li>Our school becomes a more effective learning environment when we commit to learning about & improving our practices & structures. </li></ul><ul><li>Supporting & helping educators to improve should be a key function of school leadership </li></ul><ul><li>School-wide collaboration focused on improvement will have a significant impact on teaching & learning. </li></ul>FUNDAMENTAL ASSUMPTIONS
  15. 16. <ul><li>Leadership…is a team performance… Winning strategies are based on the “we not I” philosophy. Collaboration is a social imperative. Without it people can’t get extraordinary things done. </li></ul><ul><li>-Kouzes and Posner (2003) </li></ul>
  16. 17. Our Essential Questions <ul><li>What do our students need to know and be able to do in order to be successful at each level of their learning? ( NJ CCCS ) </li></ul><ul><li>What knowledge and skills do educators need to ensure student success? ( NJ Professional Standards for Teachers and School Leaders ) </li></ul>
  17. 18. Our Essential Questions <ul><li>What do teachers need to learn to support student learning? ( NJ Professional Development Standards ) </li></ul><ul><li>How will we know when our students have mastered skills & knowledge? ( HSPA & local formative and summative assessments ) </li></ul><ul><li>What will we do when students have NOT mastered skills & knowledge? ( Interventions -3 Levels: classroom, school and beyond ) </li></ul>
  18. 19. … The methods for improving schools must not come from outside the schools. The most lasting and important changes will come from within and will draw on the great resources within the schools. Roland Barth
  19. 20. <ul><li>Is sustained by supportive and shared leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Works to develop a shared vision, mission, values and goals </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborates within the team to deepen the knowledge base of all professionals to support student needs </li></ul><ul><li>Utilizes inquiry and reflection to solve the tough problems </li></ul>A COLLABORATIVE LEARNING TEAM…
  20. 21. <ul><li>Existing Committee Examples: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Professional Relations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Technology Advancement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New Teacher Mentoring </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Curriculum Development </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“ Not Far Off the Mark” Examples: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Teacher of the Year </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Formative Assessment Creation Groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tech “Groups” </li></ul></ul>PLCs are Already Here!
  21. 22. <ul><li>DEPENDS ON </li></ul><ul><ul><li>instructional & administrative leadership both focused on the needs of the students </li></ul></ul><ul><li>NOT ON </li></ul><ul><ul><li>disconnected programs or </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>top-down decision making. </li></ul></ul>School Improvement
  22. 23. <ul><li>Be An Instrument of Change </li></ul>

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