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Professional Learning Communities

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by

Roseanne Perez

on 26 November 2014

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Transcript of Professional Learning Communities

Interests
Agenda
Diverse Student Learners
Improve
Instruction

School Achievement
AGENDA
LEARNING
COMMUNITY
In a PLC School, learning applies as much to teachers, administrators, and parents as to students.
Focus on instruction, curriculum and assessment
Support
Cooperation vs. competition
Focus intensely on the mission, vision, goals, and values.
Improvement of the whole vs. striving to get ahead individually.
A sense of purpose all staff embraces and commits to.

“Every teacher is a leader; Every leader is a teacher.”
Date: August 1, 2014
Time: 8:30 am - Noon
Location: Cafeteria
Facilitators: PLC Officers

Objective # 1: To provide strategies to improve instruction
Objective # 2: To focus on school achievement
Objective # 3: To meet the needs of diverse student learners
Next Meeting: August 31, 2014


Next PLC Meeting:
Break out into common planning/assessment groups
Purpose: To increase student achievement based on EOC, Reading FCAT, SAT, and ACT percentages)

Strategies to improve instruction
SOCIAL
How do current levels of student achievement align with our mission of learning for all?



How do our current levels of student achievement compare with:
other schools?
schools of similar SES (Title 1)?
past levels of achievement?

@ St. Leo Middle School
Professional Learning Communities
District Vision
To become a world-class school system.

District Mission
The mission of Leo County School District is to ensure that each student's mind, spirit, and body are developed to achieve his/her highest personal potential.

School Vision
To be a school where all students strengthen the character of our school community, are held to high standards of excellence, and graduate prepared to excel in the 21st Century.

School Mission
The mission of St. Leo Middle School is to provide a world-class education in an environment that fosters rigorous academic excellence, personal virtue, life-long learning, and responsible citizenship.
PROFESSIONAL
Collaborative Teams
ENGAGE IN PLC
Innovative,
solid leadership
is imperious to building an educational organization that prioritizes
successful student learning
and unremitting improvement to
closing the achievement gap
.
Strategies for building shared knowledge
Team norms are a set of rules or guidelines that a team establishes to shape the interaction of team members with each other.
Setting the norms
1. What does it mean to be "World-Class"?

2. What is your vision for our work together?
Jot Thoughts:
Presented By:
Steven Bright
Christine Diamond
Aleah Gooding
Roseanne Perez

What do you bring to our partnership?
Share with your Partner/Group
Moving Forward:

Things to consider:
*Data examination: What data are you going to begin with, what levels of those data are you examining?
* Assessment frameworks: What common assessment(s) are you using at the beginning, middle and end to the project?
* District academic plans/benchmarks: What specific benchmark(s) is the project working on? What skill(s) are being addressed from the academic plans?
TIME TOPICS
8:30 Welcome - Principal
9:00 Roundtable Discussion: Mission & Vision
9:30 What is PLCs?
10:00 Improving Instruction
10:30 School Achievement
11:00 Diverse Student Learners
12:00 Wrap-Up

It's not all about me!
A PLC is...
PROFESSIONAL EDUCATORS...
Emphasize learning.

Emphasize active student engagement and significant content.

Focus on student performance and production.

Collaborate with colleagues.

Are students of teaching, consumers of research.

Function as leaders.
VISION:
To improve student achievement
Create a guaranteed and viable curriculum
Establish a limited number of power standards
Pursue clear and focused essential academic goals
Develop a compact list of learning expectations and tangible exemplars of student proficiency
"You cannot have students as continuous learners and effective collaborators, without teachers having these same characteristics.”
(Sarason, 1990)

All members are equal
All communicate
All participate
SHOW ME THE DATA!
So what does all that mean?
What does the data show us?

What are our opportunities for improvement (OFI)?

What does the data not show us?
1. What is it
we
expect them to learn?

2. How will
we
know when they have learned it?

3. How will
we
respond when they don’t learn?

4. How will
we

respond when they already know it?
Four Critical Questions to consider in a PLC:
Clarify essential learnings (skills, knowledge, dispositions) for each course to ensure students have access to a guaranteed and viable curriculum, unit by unit.

Endurance

– Are students expected to retain the info long after the test?

Leverage

– Is the skill applicable across the curriculum?

Readiness for next level
– Is this skill necessary for the next course?
Okay …
What are we really going to be doing?
Building shared knowledge:
data examination
assessment frameworks
district pacing guides
district academic plans
curriculum framework
Okay …
But how do we get there?
List of "Pet Peeves" / Considerations
Project Description
Describe the project in detail, include the purpose statement. Also include the benchmarks the project is teaching.
Project Goals and Objectives
Create a SMART Goal (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound). Explain how this project will enhance standard classroom activities and what skills will be learned.
Writing Element
What is a writing element I can include?

What one Cooperative Learning strategy will we use?

Project Evaluation
Based on the above SMART Goal, describe how you plan to evaluate the project.
Be specific: use surveys, pre and post-tests, rubrics, other evaluation tools.

Project Timeline
Give timeline from project start to completion. Be sure it fits completely into the specific Quarter.

PLAN
Who is responsible for what specific material/part of the project. Be specific. Think of power points that guide the instruction, materials to be used, lesson plan, copies.
Responsibilities

Participation vs. Element of curriculum grades
Discussion/Collaboration about what is working and what needs to be amended.

DO
Progress Monitoring Yourself / Students
Did you meet the SMART goal?

After looking at my data, I think:
STUDY
Study the Data
ACT
To improve, I need to:
PLAN YOUR WORK; WORK YOUR PLAN
REFLECT ON THE BENEFITS OF A PLC.

WHAT STEPS WILL YOU TAKE THIS FALL TO BEGIN THE PROCESS?
WITH WHICH STEPS ARE YOU MOST COMFORTABLE? UNCOMFORTABLE?
HOW CAN WE HELP YOU?
Continuous Improvement
Results Orientation
Shared decision-making
and teamwork

Effective meetings

Focus on goals

Excitement and support

Share Concerns

Own the Problem

Solve the Problem Together
PLC's have shown to be a vital part of involving teachers in the process of building that foundation.
Through the use of PLCs that focus on the fact that
all students can learn
, educators will have the tools and know-how to make a marked positive difference in each of their students’ educational success.
There is a cultural gap in many of our school’s as a growing number of educators struggle to better serve students from cultures other their own.
St. Leo Middle School has high expectations
for meeting diverse student learners
Activity:


On the sticky note, write
down what diversity
means to you.
WHAT IS DIVERSITY?
As educators,
we
are responsible for meeting the educational needs of an always increasing diverse population within our schools. We must understand that diversity is more than race or gender. Diversity is the exploration of various differences of our students in a safe, positive, and nurturing environment. Being diverse means
understanding
and
moving beyond
simple tolerance to
embrace
and
celebrate
the rich diversity contained within each of our students.
Trainer response:
“Being aware and including people of various ethnic backgrounds, gender, socioeconomic status, learning abilities, and sexual orientation. "
DIVERSE LEARNERS
The broad range of experiences and perspectives brought to school by
culturally
,
linguistically
, and
ethnically
diverse students offer a powerful resource for everyone to learn more – in different ways, in new environments, and with different types of people (Cole, 2014). As educators, we must be ready and willing to respond to each student as an individual. It is our responsibility to create an environment where language ability doesn’t inhibit learning. As teachers we do this through diverse teaching strategies.
Activity:

In groups of no more than three, make a list of practices that help value diversity. Be prepared to share as a group.
What practices or strategies can we put into place for ourselves to close the achievement gap?
WHAT IS THE ACHIEVEMENT GAP?
The achievement gap refers to the different levels of academic performance of students from different racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds (ETS, 2014).

The cultural gap between students and their teachers can be a factor in students’ academic performance and contribute to achievement gaps among different student groups (NEA, n.d.).
We don’t have to live with an achievement gap nor should we have to lower standards for children who are poor. The strategies we use should be effective and different in order to ensure that all children are successful in school.
The practices or strategies may include:
Demonstrate High Expectations -
Low teacher expectations contribute to the achievement gap. Be willing to explore our beliefs, attitudes, and assumptions that may influence student learning.
Implement Culturally Relevant Instruction -
Try to use the language and understanding students have acquired in their families to bridge the gap; actively engage students in the learning process, use equitable grouping.

Cooperative Learning
– Opportunities for students to use language in meaningful, purposeful, and stimulating way. It helps develop academic and social skills, which builds self-esteem and self-confidence.
Technology-enriched instruction

– Technology is a tool that should be used to engage students and motivate them to learn.
Establish a caring relationship
– Recognize and respect the strengths of every student.
How can we motivate our diverse learners to want to improve their learning?
The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 requires that schools develop a plan to “enable all students to meet challenging state content and student academic achievement standards (Colombo, M., 1982-2003). Student motivation can highly enhance the classroom experiences and performance.

Ways to motivate:
Attend to student interests and provide some level of choice.
Help students to do things, know how to do things, and talk about how to do things
Listen to students (foster good lines of communication)
Create a positive learning environment
Design, structure and develop curriculum lessons with care and thought (be willing to explain)
Make materials and learning activities meaningful and worthwhile by connecting them to the real world.
Allow students options for demonstrating their learning.

Interdisciplinary units
Journals
Self- assessments
Trade books
Technology

What
materials
are available to help you meet the needs of diverse learners?
What
accommodations

and modifications
can be made?
Remember that accommodations fall under four major categories:
Content

- vary presentation of content (textbooks, lecture, demonstrations, and taped texts) to best meet the needs of students.
Process

– scaffolding, flexible grouping, interest centers, and manipulatives
Products
- provide diverse learners with different ways to demonstrate their knowledge
Learning Environment

– include areas in which work quietly and collaborate
Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
: enables all individuals to gain knowledge, skills, and enthusiasm for learning. It reduces barriers to the curriculum while maintaining high achievement standards. UDL effectively meets diverse learning needs and monitors student progress.
Response to Intervention (RTI)
: RTI helps get the best instruction to all students in order to yield the best educational outcomes for each individual student. RTI allows for tiered instruction that will provide SWD and ELL with more time and intensity to extend and deepen their understanding.
Differentiated Instruction (DI)
: DI provides multiple options for taking in information during teaching and learning. DI allows teachers to recognize students varying background knowledge, readiness, language, preferences in learning, interests and ability to react responsively.
Strategies to consider when supporting SWD and ESOL:
Within the next few grade level PLC meetings, discuss how you plan to create a more inclusive classroom.

Also, be sure to know the four influential questions that drive our PLC's:


1. What is it we expect them to learn?
2. How will we know when they have learned it?
3. How will we respond when they don’t learn it?
4. How will we respond when they already know it?
References

Cole, R. (2014). Educating everybody’s children: Diverse teaching strategies for diverse learners. Retrieved from: http://www.ascd.org/publications/books/107003/chapters/Diverse-Teaching-Strategies-for-Diverse-Learners.aspx

Colombo, M. (1982-2003). English language literacy: Motivating culturally diverse students to improve reading and writing skills. Retrieved from:
http://www.gwinnett.k12.ga.us/HopkinsES/Alfonso_Web/ESOL%20Modification%20Research/motivating_ELLs_reading_writing.pdf

DuFour, R. (2004). What is a professional learning community? Educational Leadership, 61(8),
6-11. Retrieved from http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/may 04/vol61/num08/What-Is-a-Professional-Learning-Community%C2%A2.aspx

Educational Testing Service (ETS). (2014). Achievement gap. Retrieved from: http://www.ets.org/k12/research/achievement_gap

Hester, J.P. (2003). Ethical leadership for school administrators and teachers. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc.

Marzano, R. (2003). What works in schools: Translating research into action. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.

Miller, A. (2011). Professional learning communities can build school culture from the ground up. Retrieved from http://www.ascd.org/ascd-express/vol6/612-newvoices.aspx

National Education Association. (2005). Culture abilities resilience effort: Strategies for closing the achievement gaps. Retrieved from http://www.nea.org/assets/docs/mf _CAREbook0804.pdf

National Education Association. (n.d.) Promoting Educators’ Cultural Competence To Better Serve Culturally Diverse Students. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from: http://www.nea.org/assets/docs/PB13_Cultural Competence08.pdf

Provini, C. (2012). Best practices for professional learning communities. Retrieved from http://www.educationworld.com/a_admin/best-practices-for-professional-learning-communities.shtml

Saint Leo University. (2014). Core values. Retrieved from http://www.saintleo.edu/about/florida-catholic-university.aspx

Stone, Z., Barron, K., & Finch, N. (2012). Effective and promising practices for closing achievement gaps. Retrieved from http://sites.edvantia.org/pdta/pdf/tdoe_ effective_practices_achievement_gaps080812.pdf

Wallace Foundation. (n.d.) Closing the Achievement Gap: Oregon’s Bold Plan in Educational Leadership. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from: http://www.wallacefoundation.org/ principal- story/vignettes-and-conversation-guides/Pages/developing-competent-education-leaders.aspx

Resources:
~ PLC Binder
~
Learning by Doing
by Richard Dufour (book)
Questions?
SWOT Analysis
(Saint Leo University, 2014)
(Hester, 2003)
(Miller, 2011; DuFour, 2004; Finch, 2014)
(DuFour, 2004; Marzano, 2003; Miller, 2011; Zepeda, 1999)
(DuFour, 2004; Marzano, 2003; Miller, 2011; Zepeda, 1999)
(DuFour, 2004; Marzano, 2003)
(Cole, 2014; NEA, n.d.; NEA, 2005)
(Cole, 2014)
(DuFour, 2004)
(Cole, 2014; Colombo, 2003; NEA, 2012; Provini, 2012; Wallace Foundation, n.d.)
(DuFour, 2004)
Although from Austrailia, this
video demonstrates that
educators from around the
world are working toward the
common goal of increased
student learning.
Full transcript