School Leadership at Its Best
This important work documents and examines evidence of efforts taking place in rural, urban, and suburban Pre-K-12 schools that are actively engaged in creating professional learning communities (PLCs). Literature is reviewed that defines and iden...
Education as a profession is and always has been in a constant state of change. The establishment of communities of learning within our schools is essential if we are to meet the demands and challenges of an ever changing educational landscape. Yet, to establish communities of learning is not enough. We must learn to maintain organizational learning in our schools. In Demystifying Professional Learning Communities, Huffman and Hipp provide educational leaders with the knowledge and tools to not only successfully implement Professional Learning Communities, but to sustain them. -- Mike Waldrip, principal of Liberty High School, Frisco, TX Demystifying Professional Learning Communities articulates a clear approach from start to sustainability for building a system that ensures high levels of learning for all. This book is a priceless resource for leaders who wish to transform the culture of their school to one where adults work together in order to ensure student engagement and academic success. -- Carolyn Powers, director of elemtentary administration, Fort Wayne Community Schools, IN In this book, Hipp and Huffman present not only the research but also the means to investigate professional learning communities at work. This book offers informal tools for assessing, analyzing, and diagnosing the effectiveness of professional learning communities as well as case studies that provide insight into what is working in public schools throughout the country. Both campus and central office administrators alike will find this to be a practical and useful resource in the pursuit of sustaining professional learning communities. This book provides the hope that educators need as they struggle to meet the current educational challenges and the tools required to develop cultures of collaborative inquiry. -- John Doughney, executive director of curriculum and instruction, Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District, If you can read only one book about professional learning communities, read this one! Hipp, Huffman, and colleagues cut through the rhetoric, misconceptions, buzzwords, and catch phrases that have become associated with professional learning communities, truly demystifying the concept and process of developing one. Hipp and Huffman articulate the meanings and relationships of the concept's three key wordsprofessional, learning, and communityand walk readers through the process of developing a professional learning community, providing helpful instruments to assist with the process. The book includes three richly descriptive cases of schools involved in the ongoing journey of becoming and being a professional learning community. The writing is clear, practical, and highly readable. Kudos on a great volume! I intend to use this book the next time I teach my graduate-level course, Leadership for Teaching and Learning. -- Ulrich C. Reitzug, professor, University of North Carolina at Greensboro The expectations about what schools are suppose to do shifts and changes constantly. School leadership is no longer seen as the sole responsibility of one person. It must be embedded in the school community as a whole. This book clearly defines and illustrates the powerful results that can be attained and sustained through the effective work of a professional learning community (PLC) The tools included help schools assess and analyze the school as a PLC. They help identify what it means to truly operationalize a culture of professional learning from the principal?s office to the classroom. The authors address such issues as leadership succession, teacher efficacy, and the effects of racism and classism on the culture of an organization. Those areas are often overlooked or glossed over, yet they go to the very heart of healthy communities. The case studies personalized the challenges and possibilities for me. As a former principal, I found myself identifying with many of the same experiences captured ineach school setting. Chan
Kristine Kiefer Hipp is a professor in the Doctorate in Leadership for the Advancement of Learning and Service program and District Administrative Licensure programs at Cardinal Stritch University. She also serves in the university's Leadership Center and coordinates leadership programs in Corciano, Italy. Her research interests and consulting involve leadership, professional learning communities, collective efficacy, and organizational and cultural change efforts. Jane Bumpers Huffman is associate professor of educational administration at the University of North Texas. Huffman served as a Visiting Scholar in 2009 at National Taiwan Normal University and has a research emphasis in professional learning communities, change management, leadership, and parent involvement.
Chapter 1 Foreword Chapter 2 Introduction Chapter 3 Demystifying the PLC Concept Chapter 4 Methodology and Conceptual Framework Chapter 5 Assessing and Analyzing Schools Chapter 6 Diagnostic and Planning Tools Chapter 7 The Professional Teaching and Learning Cycle Chapter 8 Case Story Overview Chapter 9 Case Story #1: Lake Elementary (PreK-8) Chapter 10 Case Story #2: Galena Park Middle School (6-8) Chapter 11 Case Story #3: Ralph H. Metcalfe Elementary (K4-8) Chapter 12 Sustainability: A Constant Process for Continuing Improvement Chapter 13 Final Reflections for Moving Schools Forward