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Professional Learning Communities
Old 02-02-2008, 09:43 PM
 
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I was wondering if anyone's school is participating in Professional Learning Communities? What is your opinion of them? Pros and cons...My school is just starting our first year and our staff feels overwhelmed by everything so far. Thanks-Sheltie


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This is my first year at
Old 02-03-2008, 01:58 AM
 
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a school that implements PLC. I haven't seen any difference so far. Each grade level meets with the prinicipal every week. Other than that I don't see any difference from the other schools I have taught at. There is a conference in June in Las Vegas that many of us new to the school will be attending(including myself). What are you doing that makes you feel overwhelmed? I need to do some research to fully understand this PLC approach. I would appreciate any insight you have.
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Old 02-03-2008, 05:25 AM
 
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We have PLC's every Tuesday and Thurday with our grade level during our planning time. Sometimes our principal or another support staff person attends, but not always. Usually we have some type of "project" we are working on duing this time (textbook adoption stuff, standards stuff, etc.) Sometimes these meeting seem to be very productive and other times we don't get much accomplished. It can be stressful because there are usually a million things I need to be doing in my own room, and having to sit in a PLC twice a week does take up some time. However, for the most part I like it. It gives us a chance to sit down as a grade level and connect to see whats going on across the grade level. The first year we did PLC"s everything was a lot more rigid and formal. but now it has been 2 years and things have relaxed a lot. I hope this helps!
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Old 02-03-2008, 06:24 AM
 
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We've had about 2 years of PLC. Something I noticed is that, instead of just complaining about how things are, a committee can get together, propose an alternate plan, present it to the others in an all-faculty meeting, and have it voted on. We've done this a few times.
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We have been doing this
Old 02-03-2008, 07:02 AM
 
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Our school has been doing PLC for about 2 years. We started last year and then upped the ante on it so to speak. We meet for whole building PLC at least once a month and then have department meetings at least once a month unless we need to meet again.

It seems to be working ok for us at the time. We get a lot of issues accomplished with this system.


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just started as well
Old 02-03-2008, 07:06 AM
 
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We just started as well. We have been meeting on Tuesday at a different time than conference time with the principal. We made a goal for reading and have been working on that. Now more people went to see the Defours about 3 weeks ago. When they came back, we reevaluated what we were doing and are trying to make a major step forward. We have added working on Math on Thursdays. Everyone that went said that they had been feeling kinda lost on the idea until they went to the workshop. Now they see what we are trying to accomplish. It makes it hard for the rest of us, because we haven't seen it. They are trying to see when more of us can go, but it is expensive. They heard it would cost 1000 a person for them to come to us. I have heard that it will be a long process (a couple of years), but from what I have heard it will be great!

Alot of us feel overwhelmed as well, but I think that will be just at the beginning. Once all your assessments are written, then you wont have to make them up anymore. Also we are a little off on how the enrichment time will work (and how to fit it in), but once we do it I think it will be better. Our goal is to have one assessment done and then try to do the enrichment/tutorials for that topic to see how it all goes before next year.
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PLC's
Old 02-03-2008, 07:42 AM
 
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We also started PLC's this year...if you can call it that. Our principal's plan is to take it slow to get all staff on board. We currently meet in small PLC groups. Our small groups are working on common assessments and we discuss our lessons that lead up to our final common assessment.

Unfortunately, we do not have a "pyramid of intervention". We do not have total staff buy in. And we do not have a method of collaborating across PLC's or even publish our minutes of our meetings to know what other PLC's have accomplished.

In my PLC group and in almost each PLC group, there is at least one person that refuses to collaborate. These people happily take the work of others, but do not contribute except their negative attitudes at meeting. Our principal just tells us that it is "up to us" to bring those people along. I am a hard working, concientious teacher and when my boss tells me to do something, I do. Unfortunately, if you have a colleage that does not want to work, you cannot give them detention or call their parents. What are we supposed to do?

I am currently very frustrated with our PLC situation. While I still have found that I enjoy collaborating with the majority of my group, that one person really can bring the group down.

When I first learned about PLC's I was inspired and impressed. Now I know why they don't work.
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PLC's
Old 02-03-2008, 09:00 AM
 
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A couple of years ago at my old school my principal tried this. It was an optional activity for staff, and considering the first meeting was in the summer, a lot of people opted to participate. Well, once school started, the principal didn't really know how to continue with things. He was "busy" and didn't spend the time preparing for meetings. A couple of times he hadn't even done the reading. The meetings started becoming far in between. It was like something that he had heard about, but didn't really spend time learning how to implement. Things really fell apart and never really benefited anyone.

If they are done right, I can see a great benefit to a PLC. But I think unless the leader of the group has training, goals, a vision, and they are willing to invest the time, PLC's will not benefit anyone and leave other participants feeling like they wasted their time.
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PLC's
Old 02-03-2008, 01:41 PM
 
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Thanks for all of your responses. Our staff is stressed because it seems like PLC's will add even more meetings and require more time on top of our already hectic schedules. I hope the PLCs are successful in our building.
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Old 02-03-2008, 05:25 PM
 
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We are in our first real year of PLCs and I think it has been really good for our school. It has helped us focus our articulation times to be more effective (usually!), and we get more done. We are also much more in charge of our school than we used to be. We have a K-12 school, no more than one teacher (or less) per grade level, so we have an El team and a secondary team. In some ways it does not seem that much different, but I think our focus on our planning time (which we were never guaranteed before, and we did not always do very regularly) has really made a difference for our school.


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Old 03-29-2017, 07:22 PM
 
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Hi Sheltie

Thank you for the post. I am currently learning about PLC as a student at ASU. To all of you that have experienced teaching as a PLC, and without it, (with all the pros and cons of both) which experience would you rather be a part of?
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