Improving Student Learning Through Professional Learning Communities: Employing a System-Wide Approach
Keywords: Professional Learning Communities, Teacher Learning, System-Wide Approach, Teacher Effectiveness
AbstractEffective Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) contribute to the overall improvement of student learning when a system-wide, leadership-based approach from the district and school level is applied by aligning a common vision, goal, and purpose. Despite a government-led implementation of PLCs province-wide in New Brunswick schools over ten years ago, the efficacy of PLCs in one particular New Brunswick school district has demonstrated little evidence of effectiveness or improvement. A district leadership team employed an Internal District Instrument (IDI) survey to measure areas of strength and barriers as it relates to its PLC formation and growth. Additionally, the team collected pre and post perception survey data from twenty teachers (n=20) during a summer learning session on building and sustaining PLCs. IDI survey results indicated that the district leadership team was seeking help in the domain of professional growth and development and that teachers and administrators were finding PLCs to be ineffective, to lack direction, and to fail to meet teacher-learning needs.
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