Professional Learning Communities (PLC) enable JSA teachers to continually learn from one another through shared visioning and planning, as well as thorough critical examination of what works to improve student outcomes. PLCs contribute significantly to JSA’s learning communities by fostering a culture of collaboration and collective responsibility for the development of effective teaching practices. The PLC’s focus on continuous improvement in staff performance as well as student learning.
This year, the PLCs continue to implement Powerful Learning and Teaching throughout JSA, which is aimed at:
Through the following Six Essential Characteristics of a PLC, each group focuses on a Theory of Action from the Powerful Learning and Teaching Initiative.
The six groups meet weekly to plan the process they will follow to achieve their objectives. This process includes strategies for collecting student outcomes data, preparing action plans, developing procedures for implementation, and proposed methods of evaluating the impact of their work on teacher practice and student learning.
Listed are the Theories of Action JSA PLCs have chosen to investigate in 2017.
‘When schools and teachers set high expectations and develop authentic relationships, then students’ confidence and commitment to education increases and the school’s ethos and culture deepens.’
‘When peer assessment and assessment for learning (AfL) are consistently utilised, student engagement, learning and achievement accelerates.’
‘When teachers set learning intentions and use appropriate pace and have a clear and strong narrative about their teaching and curriculum, then students are more secure about their learning, and achievement and understanding is increased.’
‘When teacher directed instruction across the school becomes consistently more enquiry focused, then the level of student achievement and curiosity increases.’
‘When learning tasks are purposeful, clearly defined, differentiated and challenging, then the more powerful, progressive and precise the learning for all students.’
‘If teachers use co-operative group structures/techniques to mediate between whole class instruction and students carrying out tasks, then the academic performance of the whole class will increase as well as the spirit of collaboration and mutual responsibility.’