Blog

Operationalizing the Big Picture: The Liberal High School PLC Journey

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As we sat in the Cockrell Theater in San Antonio, Texas, last June at the PLC at Work Institute, our three-member-team was a little stunned as Rebecca DuFour clarified what a PLC is and what it is not... Read more

Empowering the Silent Stakeholders—Students

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“To be a teacher is to be a prophet. We are not preparing children for the world we live in but for a future we can barely imagine.”—Gordon Brown, Former Dean of MIT Engineering School. Read more

The Battle Over Homework

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Last night we held parent/teacher conferences at our elementary school. I’ve been a principal at three different elementary schools over the past 13 years, and before that I was a classroom . . . Read more

New Answers to Old Questions: Transition to Common Core

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One of the things I am most excited about is planning for the transition to common core state standards. At the same time, this shift keeps me up at night. How will we get it done? How will we fund . . . Read more

Collaboration on a Broader Scale: Partnering With Higher Education to Build Capacity

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One of the three big ideas of a professional learning community is building a collaborative culture. We build collaborative teams and relationships within our organizations to increase our . . . Read more

Our State Adopted the Common Core Standards—Now What?

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Many schools and districts that have been implementing the PLC process are now wondering how to respond to the new Common Core Standards that their states have adopted. They’ve worked hard to . . . Read more

What Teachers Need, Part 2

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Teachers need to work in collaborative teams with their colleagues. Yet, traditionally teachers have worked in isolation. Never before in the history of American public education have teachers been asked—in fact, directed—to ensure higher learning... Read more

What Teachers Need, Part 1

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Increasingly, states are adopting more intensive and complex teacher evaluation systems. While it is difficult to determine with any degree of accuracy the motivation behind these initiatives, . . . Read more

Creating Buy-In for PLCs

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It is not unusual to have persons excited about the professional learning community concept but express concern that others will not “buy-in.” Educators not buying into research-based . . . Read more

Moving School Improvement Into the Classroom With SMART Goals

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School districts across the United States are faced with improving achievement for all students. The complexity of this issue has resulted in the expansion of organized walkthroughs taking place . . . Read more

A Powerful Tool for Student and Teacher Learning

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I remember early in my leadership constantly assessing where we were as a school and setting goals for where we needed to go as a school. With a clear vision in mind, we would chart incremental . . . Read more

Classroom Observation Drives Instructional Practices

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Moving instructional practices forward at a school site can be a daunting task. Ask any principal, team leader, or department chair how easy it is to motivate colleagues to row in the same . . . Read more

PLC Speakers Video Playlist

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Here’s a great new resource for PLC admins and teachers: a playlist of speakers discussing the various aspects of PLCs. You can scroll through the videos below, or visit the playlist page on . . . Read more

10 Steps to Creating a PLC Culture

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As a Solution Tree associate for the last 7 years, I have had the privilege of working with many groups of educators as they try to develop their professional learning community (PLC). One of the . . . Read more

No Excuses for No Homework

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I’d wager that most middle grades teachers spend incredible amounts of time dealing with students and their homework issues. I’m also willing to bet that homework plays a major role in . . . Read more