May Volume 71 Number 8 Professional Learning: Guskey With backward planning, schools can ensure that they choose professional development activities aligned with their most important goals. Hundert, the Western Civilization teacher at St. In the film's opening scene, the headmaster of the school stands before the assembled student body explaining the meaning of the school motto, Finis Origine Pendet:
EMAIL In the development of the professional learning community PLC as a model of school reform, Dufour et al emphasize that each word of a PLC has been strategically chosen; "professional learning community" has built-in purpose to its meaning.
Professionals, in this case educational experts, engage in a continuous cycle of inquiry or learning that promotes a collaborative neighborhood or community. This model has been gaining momentum as "an increasing number of organizations and schools have succeeded with this model" Schmoker, The Effectiveness of the Professional Learning Community Model The following recommended principles guide shift the development of a professional learning community: From a focus on teaching to a focus on learning From working in isolation to working collaboratively.
From focusing on activities to focusing on results.
From fixed time to flexible time. From average learning to individual learning. From punitive to positive. A key component to effective reform when using a PLC model is that the collaboration be purposeful DuFour, Strahan's study of three elementary schools and Langer's study of 25 secondary schools highlighted professional conversations as a foundation for successful reform.
Here, it is important to note, there is not just one component or focus that can shoulder the responsibility for successful reform.
The people, the ideas, and the tools necessary to build professional learning communities are interdependent. According to Peter Senge in his article on leadership and learning, "What fundamentally will distinguish learning organizations from traditional authoritarian "controlling organizations" will be the mastery of certain basic disciplines" p.
These disciplines are outlined in the following table: The effectiveness of a professional learning community would depend on the organization's ability to function at high levels in all five disciplines. Michael Fullen has a formula that he uses to help describe an organization's ability to be successful in their reform efforts: Fullen's formula and Senge's disciplines can work hand in hand to describe school change.
Either of these explanations can serve to describe the effectiveness of a professional learning community. No two PLCs are the same. PLCs are as fluid and dynamic as the community they represent. The effectiveness of any PLC is only as strong as its weakest link and it becomes the challenge of the learning organization to evolve in pluripotent ways.
Leaders that exhibit collaborative or transformational styles have been shown to "have greater opportunities for success in developing professional learning communities" p. Their research reinforces the trend for promoting more facilitative leadership styles in order to build partnerships that afford students every opportunity for success.
School Climate "The professional learning community model has now reached a critical juncture This can be avoided if the principal, as instructional leader, stays the course so that the core principless of the model "become deeply embedded in the culture of the school" p.
It is the responsibility of the school's leadership to maintain a school climate that promotes a professional learning community.
At the National Education Association's annual convention in Scottsdale, Arizona, Richard DuFour spoke about his "tight-loose" style of leadership. For example, he demands achievement for all students; however, how the teachers choose to "get there" is up to them.
Teachers and students are given ownership and it is empowering; it is the driving force of the school's climate. Michael Fullen addresses the importance of school climate to successful reform when he refers to climate as the "inside story.
In this realm, Fullen further suggests that educators should pay attention to the difference between "restructuring" and reculturing. Roland Bartha former public school teacher and principal, champions a relationship-oriented approach to fostering successful school climates.
Teacher Morale Moreover, collaboration is a key component to teacher morale. Rosenholtz's important book, Teachers Workplace: The social organization of schools, she summarizes that the hopes of educators "were not likely the domain of isolated workplaces" p. Where on the other side, in collaborative schools, "many minds tended to work better than a few" p.
In these types of schools, the modus operandi was one of assistance; these schools lived in a culture that empowered each other.Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) used in schools as a form of teacher DuFour, R.
(). What is a professional learning community? Education Leadership, 61(8), ,, " Professional Development through PLCs: Methods for Measuring PLC Efficacy. The purpose of the study was to investigate whether Exemplary, Recognized and Acceptable schools differ in their school climates, as measured by the 10 dimensions of the Organizational Health Inventory.
Significant differences were found on all 10 dimensions of the Organizational Health Inventory, with Exemplary schools out‐performing Acceptable schools. The professional learning community model flows from the assumption that the core mission of formal education is not simply to ensure that students are taught but to ensure that they learn.
This simple shift—from a focus on teaching to a focus on learning—has profound implications for schools.
Dufour R What Is A Professional Learning Community Educational Leadership 61 8 6 11 What is a Professional Learning Community? NaKishia D. Glenn Gardner-Webb University Abstract Throughout this paper you will be able to gain more knowledge on what a Professional Learning Community (PLC) is.
In the development of the professional learning community (PLC) as a model of school reform, Dufour et al () emphasize that each word of a PLC has been strategically chosen; "professional learning community" has built-in purpose to its meaning.
This article is a reply by the author to a response to his article about "The Quality Time Program".
Many of the responses saw the program, which involved teachers 'buddying' with students experiencing behavioural problems, as yet another imposition on teachers' time.