West Ottawa High School (2020)

  1. PLC Story
  2. PLC Practices
  3. Achievement Data
  4. Awards
  5. Resources

West Ottawa High School began their journey with building a successful PLC about a decade ago by attending their first Solution Tree event.  Since that time, a culture of collaboration has been a critical attribute to West Ottawa High School.  We believe in collaboration at every level from the classroom to the leadership team.  We believe in mantra that WE>ME.  In an effort to succinctly describe how we have built a successful PLC, here is our list of collective commitments.

  1. Community

    • Build Relationships
    • Ensure a Safe and Healthy Learning Environment
    • Provide Opportunities
  2. Culture

    • Celebrate WO
    • Embrace Diversity
    • Promote Risk-Taking and Developing a Growth Mindset
  3. Curriculum + Instruction

    • Guarantee a Viable Curriculum
    • Deliver Engaging, Relevant, and Rigorous Learning Experiences
    • Believe All Students Can Learn
  4. Collaboration

    • Commit to the PLC Process
    • Acknowledge We > Me
    • Open to Learn from Others

1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.

West Ottawa High School has made great strides over the last decade in our PLC process.  Each of our PLC's have spent a considerable amount of time defining the viable curriculum in their classes.  Furthermore, just like all of the components of the PLC process, this has been fluid.  Teachers are always collaborating and reflecting on adjusting the curriculum based on state/national standards or any other new information available.  

Our process of monitoring student learning is critical to the success of our students.  A process has been developed at WOHS to underline the steps involved and can be viewed by clicking here.  Once again, this process is always changing based on data review and reflection.  West Ottawa High School has reserved time for PLC's both during the school day and outside of school hours for our teachers complete this critical step of creating common assessments.

Once we achieved the steps of defining the viable curriculum and common assessments, the bulk of the work started going into the monitoring of student learning.  Formative assessments are monitored at the classroom and PLC level.  Interventions and/or adjustments are utilized every day at West Ottawa High School based on the monitoring of data.  Students are assigned to an intervention any time the data suggests such action.  Most academic departments now utilize online assessment tools which has strengthened the daily monitoring of student learning.  This allows teachers to identify and address students who did not learn and those who demonstrated proficiency.

The most recent system that has been implemented is called Focused PLC.  In this process, courses with the highest percentage of students not meeting proficiency are identified.  The PLCs of these courses are moved to the Focused PLC designation.  They are offered the opportunity to meet five additional times per semester above the regularly scheduled PLC times.  There is a heavy focus on formative assessment data through the use of Illuminate in the Focused PLC.  Our goal is to improve student learning in these courses.


2. Creating systems of intervention to provide students with additional time and support for learning.

At West Ottawa High School, our teachers are committed to all students and willing to be leaders in this capacity.  Through the collaboration between many leadership groups such as the School Improvement Team, PBIS Team, Special Education Department and English Learner Department, we have created a pyramid of interventions. Without a doubt, our greatest Tier 1 intervention that is available to all students is our Academic Seminar that we run two days a week.  This designed time permits immediate intervention and enrichment.  Based on formative assessment data, students are able to receive quality support by their academic teachers during seminar.  Additionally, we have created "target seminars" for students requiring more extensive support.  Furthermore, West Ottawa High School has created additional Tier 2 and Tier 3 intervention programs based on student need.  Once again many of these interventions are targeted at specific learning populations including but not limited to, "at-risk" freshmen, English Learners, Special Education students, etc.  The bottom line is that West Ottawa High School believes all student can learn, and we have created a system of interventions that allows us to meet our mission of "preparing all students to be college, career and life ready."




3. Building teacher capacity to work as members of high performing collaborative teams that focus efforts on improved learning for all students.

Our collaborative teams are high performing and focused on student learning.  Starting with defining a viable curriculum and creating common assessments, our teams are committed to making sure every student engages in quality learning experiences.  All of our teams continuously review, define and adjust curriculum, instruction and assessments based on data and new best practices. 

Most of our professional development is teacher led as we strive for a culture of collaboration and promote risk taking among teachers.  Additionally, professional development surrounding the PLC process is frequently offered for our teachers.  Activities such as "assessing your place in the PLC journey" or "where do we go from here" allow our teachers to grow as members of high-performing collaborative teams.

At West Ottawa High School, the PLC process has been a dominating factor in our data improvement over the past decade.  We believe all students can learn.  We believe that through collaboration and by focusing on the big three ideas behind PLC's, our efforts can make a difference for all students.  Our diverse learning population is a wonderful asset of our school, and we take great pride in collaborating to make sure every student becomes "college, career and life ready."

Achievement Data Files

Additional Achievement Data

While our PLCs certainly utilize State testing data such as SAT/PSAT, that is only one small piece of our large picture.  West Ottawa High School at our core, believes in access and opportunity for all.  The following graphs show how our PLC process has impacted more than just our formative and summative assessment data.  Please click on the link to view the data.

Graduation Rate

Advanced Placement Enrollment Trends

First Generation Post-Secondary Education





Bridge Magazine Academic State Champ based on performance vs. socioeconomic status.

2020 Niche Report - Best High School in Ottawa County

2019 Mackinac Report - Best High School in Ottawa County