Leading Professional Learning Teams
A Start-Up Guide for Improving Instruction
Foreword by Shirley M. Hord
Leadership | Professional Learning Communities
"As a high school principal, it is crucial to have tools and models that have teeth, that will make an impact on student achievement, and also improve collegiality and collaboration among teachers. This is a wonderful faculty book study choice for any school looking to have teams of teachers focused on data and how to incorporate best practices in their classrooms."
—Steve Knobl, Principal
Gulf High School, New Port Richey, FL
Strengthen teacher expertise and expand instructional leadership through focused professional learning teams!
Although a generous amount of research describes professional learning teams (PLTs) as a positive structure for developing a vision of school change through informed, data-based decision making, little guidance exists for schools wanting to create and sustain this type of team initiative.
Leading Professional Learning Teams provides a field-tested model for implementing PLTs that strengthen teacher collaboration in professional learning communities, improve instruction, and increase student achievement. Developed in partnership between educators, Education Northwest (formerly known as the Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory), and six high-needs schools, this guide shows a professional learning team in action. Each chapter highlights four important elements to help ensure alignment with educators' objectives:
- Action: Steps for starting up a PLT
- Voices From the Field: School leaders offering insights from actual PLTs
- Tools: Resources with information about PLTs, plus at-a-glance road maps for each step of the implementation process
- Leadership Team Discussion: Discussion suggestions for implementation leaders
Written for school leaders who are new to PLTs and those who want to fine-tune their efforts, this resource is an invaluable tool for correlating staff development with your school's improvement goals.
"As a high school principal, it is crucial to have tools and models that have teeth, that will make an impact on student achievement, and also improve collegiality and collaboration among teachers. This is a wonderful faculty book study choice for any school looking to have teams of teachers focused on data and how to incorporate best practices in their classrooms. I really like the key points section for an extra-busy administrator or teacher who still wants to get the main ideas."
This book comes out of the highly credible stable of NWREL (Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory), with the foreword written by Shirley Hord. Typically, the book is about changing practice in schools, and it leads the readers through the change process.
If I had to think of three adjectives to describe this book, they would be: PRACTICAL, PRACTICAL, PRACTICAL. The resources offered include: NSCD standards, continuous improvement capacity survey, PLC survey, very useful strategies for finding time for professional learning, conflict resolution, team expectations, and 13 very useful tools, including road maps.
Change is difficult in schools, but with this support, essential change becomes doable. And, the book will provide the best professional learning that you could buy in setting up professional learning teams.
This book is essential reading for school leadership teams.
"This book is packed with insights about creating cultures of inquiry that are focused upon student learning. I found the gritty details of the work of the teams helpful. That alone would convince me to buy the book."
"A must-read guide for any school principal ready to take the next step forward into professional learning teams to improve instruction and learning in their school. This well-organized guide is both practical and research based."