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School Effectiveness Framework Professional Learning Communities Flintshire / Merthyr Pilot Professor Alma Harris Michelle Jones.

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Presentation on theme: "School Effectiveness Framework Professional Learning Communities Flintshire / Merthyr Pilot Professor Alma Harris Michelle Jones."— Presentation transcript:

1 School Effectiveness Framework Professional Learning Communities Flintshire / Merthyr Pilot
Professor Alma Harris Michelle Jones


3 The Challenge (SEF 2008) To transform the education system so that we ensure success for each student in each setting (Harris, 2008)

4 But how do we transform our school system in Wales?
Page 6

5 Tri-Level Reform in Wales

6 Limitations of Reform Reforms that do not take account of what happens in the classroom have a similar effect to that of a storm on the ocean – the surface is agitated and turbulent, while the ocean floor is calm and serene (if a bit murky). Policy churns dramatically, creating the appearance of major changes…while deep below the surface, life goes on largely uninterrupted.” (Cuban, L. How teachers taught: Constancy and Change in American classrooms) Challenges Improve outcomes and raise aspirations for all children and young people Reduce variation: Between Wales, the UK and best performing systems Within and between Local Authorities Within and between schools Between outcomes achieved by different groups and gender of pupils Diminish the link between attainment and socio economic circumstances Aligning policies so that all impact on improved learning and wellbeing

7 The most effective school improvement programmes ...
Focus on learning outcomes Concentrate on the learning level and the instructional behaviours and practices of teachers Focus on collaborative patterns of staff development that enable teachers to enquire into practice in order to improve learning outcomes

8 How the Best School Systems Come out on Top (Mckinsey2007)
The only way to improve outcomes is to improve instruction In order to improve instruction schools need to find a way of changing what goes on in the classroom

9 , Wales should learn from the best systems around the world (Barber, 2010) Standards and Accountability Globally-benchmarked standards Good, transparent data and accountability Every child on the agenda always in order to challenge inequality Human Capital Recruit great people and train them well Continuous improvement of pedagogical skills and knowledge Great leadership at school level Structure and Organisation Effective, enabling central department and agencies Capacity to manage change and engage communities at every level Operational responsibility and budgets significantly devolved to school level

10 Fullan (2010) The evidence is clear. PLCs, well implemented, produce learning results for schools and in networks of schools or whole local authorities who use PLCs across their schools. The reason is also clear ...PLCs develop the capacity of teachers to improve teaching practices that get results which means that PLCs can contribute to system transformation in Wales

11 Evidence Professional learning communities have a positive impact on student achievement  A professional learning community enables teachers to engage is collaborative enquiry and change within their own schools initially and across schools subsequently A PLC is a powerful vehicle for changing teachers’ behaviour and improving student learning outcomes but only when it is focused on the improvement of learning rather than the improvement of teaching   Teachers who are part of a professional learning community tend to be more effective in the classroom and achieve better student outcomes   Teacher enquiry is at the heart of effective professional learning communities, it is a key driver in improving classroom practice Professional learning communities improve teachers’ professional learning and secure improved school performance, irrespective of the school context and its socio-economic profile

12 Professional Learning
Communities within, between and across Schools (SEF, 2008) High performing schools help teachers improve instruction by learning from each other. ‘How the world’s best -performing school systems came out on top.’ McKinsey 2007

13 What is a PLC? Harris and Jones, 2010
Professional learning communities are where teachers participate in decision making, have a sense of purpose, engage in collaborative work and accept joint responsibility for the outcomes of their work. Empowering teachers in this way and providing them with opportunities to lead is based on the simple but powerful idea that if schools are to meet learner needs, they must provide opportunities for teachers to innovate, develop and learn together. Focus on outcomes for c&yp not institutional success Tri=level reform: Collective responsibility for improved outcomes System based on collaboration not competition System leadership, PLCs: Providing leadership beyond institutional boundaries Learning together as principal mechanism for development Improvement and accountability: Intelligent use of data to track progress at variety of levels Culture of transparent sharing of strengths, weaknesses in support of high performance Accountability focused on improvement

14 PLCs Professional Learning Communities allow teachers to focus their professional development efforts on improving learning outcomes They allow teachers to work together within schools first and then between and across schools. Participants learn more through active construction of knowledge rather than through passive receipt of information

15 2 Key Principles (Harris and Jones, 2009)
Enquiry Collaboration

16 Characteristics of a PLC (Harris and Jones, 2009)
Distributed/C Leadership Focus on Learner Needs Attention to Instructional Core Enquiry driven- outcomes lead to change in practice

17 PLC Building blocks Leadership Distributed Collaborative Enquiry
Generation Knowledge

18 Distributed leadership (Harris, 2007)
is fundamentally about connecting leadership practice more closely with teaching and learning practice.

19 Distributed Leadership: 3 Levels (Harris, 2008)
Superficial level – delegation Subterranean level-new teams, new roles and responsibilities Deep level- cultural & capacity building i.e. the way of working around here

20 Implementing SEF through PLCs (Harris and Jones, 2009)
Building and Sustaining Professional Learning Communities Inter-dependent practice Shared responsibility and accountability Broad Based Leadership Distributed and Classroom Focused Relentless Focus on Learning Professional Pupil

21 7 phases of establishing a PLC
(Harris and Jones, 2009) 1. Identifying the group 7. Sharing Outcomes – within and between schools 6. Refining 2.Agreeing a common focus 5.Trialing - Feedback 3. Action Enquiry 4.Innovation & Change Extend Establish Enquire

22 PLCs within schools Data Trust Culture Values
Culture, trust, Values – conditions necessary within a school to create a learning community. PLC needs to be developed within school first. Specific groups may include a SIG, SLT or team of NQTs focusing on the same enquiry. Specific group Many groups, eg Lesson Study

23 Between Schools Across Schools Support staff Across LAs Pupils
Heads Teachers Across Schools PLCs within schools Support staff Across LAs Pupils

24 SEF 2008 Across Schools Between Schools Across LAs PLCs within schools
Headteachers Teachers Across Schools PLCs within schools Between Schools Governors Support staff Pupils Across LAs

25 PLC Guidance Material Part 1
What is a Professional Learning Community? The School as a Learning Community How do you create a PLC? Qualities / characteristics of a PLC PLC’s and the SEP Characteristics of a PLC facilitator/leader Role of the PLC facilitator Case studies Part Potential opportunities for CPD including range of PLC activities. Links to Performance Management Evaluating the impact of professional learning and the PLC CPD overview chart for all staff at different stages in their careers and highlight links to PLCs. Link to the ‘new national standards’ review.

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