Blog

'Better' Doesn't Happen All By Itself

My granddaddy used to say, “Tighten up every little chance you get. ‘Better’ doesn’t happen all by itself.” And my granddaddy was always right. (With the exception . . . Read more

There is an 'I' in TEAM

thumb

Like many educational terms, we throw them around and often use them loosely. I find we often use the term “team” in this manner. “We are a great team.” “I . . . Read more

Redesigning Our Schools: How Can We Do That?

thumb

I recently had the opportunity to attend the RTI at Work Institute™ in Edmonton, Canada. One of the great things about attending a Solution Tree Institute is the opportunity to learn alongside educators from all over North America. The opportunity to hear different perspectives and ways of thinking around the school improvement process is an invaluable learning experience. Read more

The Forgotten Question

thumb

If Dufour, Dufour, Eaker, Many, and Mattos wrote that professional learning communities have four essential questions to answer, there must be a good reason. Of course, there is a good reason: all four questions are essential. All four questions need to be answered to ensure all students are learning at the highest level possible. Read more

Starting the PLC Journey

thumb

There are many paths that lead an educator, a school, a district, or even a state to the PLC journey. Some are led to the path through a state or district initiative, others through the vision of their principal, others by a guiding coalition of teachers at their school. And some, like myself, discover the path through their individual journeys and growth as educators. The truth is that the ways educators come to the PLC journey are as numerous as the individuals on the path. However, one common influence we all share at the beginning of the journey is a prevailing sense of hope—the expectation and desire for something different, something that can change things for the better. Read more

A PLC Love Letter to the Left-Brained, Linear Thinker

thumb

My Dearest Left-Brained Friends, Two years ago I began my quest to be Dad of the Year; if not on the planet, at least in my own home. My hero, my father, was turning 60 years old and his life-long dream was to visit Disney World before he was too old to enjoy it. With three young girls of my own, a family trip to “The Happiest Place on Earth” seemed like the perfect opportunity to celebrate my dad and show my daughters that they too could be a princess one day. Read more

A Tsunami Is Headed for Higher Education

thumb

A tsunami is headed directly for American public colleges and universities. The wave of discontentment with public K-12 schools that resulted in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 is now lapping at the doors of public institutions of higher education. There are clear warning signs. One only has to look at the increasing number of books and articles that are critical of America’s colleges and universities. Books with titles such as The Moral Collapse of the University, The Closing of the American Mind, Profscam, The University in Ruins, and Our Underachieving Colleges consistently send the message that our colleges and universities are in disarray. Read more

Advocating for the PLC Concept

thumb

Occasionally, I have found myself in the position of being asked to defend the PLC concept. My initial impulse has often been to reference relevant research findings or point to schools and school . . . Read more

Moving at the Speed of Life!! Avoiding the "Because I Can" Syndrome in 2013-2014!

thumb

The 2013-2104 school year is about to begin! For some of you, it has already started. Don’t you just love the energy, the passion, and the hope of the new school year? Yet soon enough, you . . . Read more

Calling All Wisconsin PLCs

thumb

In a recent story, Teachers Voice Concern Over Budget Cuts, NPR spoke with several teachers about proposed budget cuts in Wisconsin, California, and Ohio. One of the interviewees was Allison Pratt… Read more

From Lowest in District to Best in State: Lakeridge Junior High School

thumb

In 2002, Lakeridge Junior High in Orem, Utah, was the lowest performing junior high school in the Alpine School District. When the staff committed to full implementation of the PLC process, student achievement began… Read more

Going From Good to Great: Robert Frost Junior High School

thumb

Congratulations to Robert Frost Junior High School, this week's AllThingsPLC featured school! Rick and Becky DuFour had wonderful things to say about this shining example of PLC progress… Read more

Demographics Are Not Destiny: Stults Road Elementary School

thumb

Congratulations to Stults Road Elementary, this week’s AllThingsPLC featured school! The following is what Rick and Becky DuFour had to say about this shining example of PLC progress:  . . . Read more

Sustainable Improvement: Adlai E. Stevenson High School

thumb

Over the next few weeks, AllThingsPLC will feature the work of five schools chosen by Rick and Becky DuFour as models of PLC achievement. This is what the DuFours had to say about this week’s school… Read more

Which School Improvement Approach Works?

thumb

It seems to me that there are three competing approaches to school improvement in the United States today that are based on very different assumptions… Read more