SEDL Monthly: An e-bulletin of SEDL / July 2012 /


Cover of Professional Learning Communities Assessment-Revised

Featured Product
Professional Learning Communities Assessment-Revised
The Professional Learning Communities Assessment-Revised (PLCA-R) is a questionnaire developed by Dianne F. Olivier and Kristine Kiefer Hipp. The PLCA-R assesses educators’ perceptions about administrators, staff, and stakeholders based on the dimensions of a professional learning community and related attributes. The questionnaire contains a number of statements about practices that occur in some schools. PLCA-R participants read a series of statements and then use a scale to indicate the degree to which they agree with each statement.
Buy the PLCA-R

New at SEDL
Enroll in a Reading and Math Study
Has your state adopted the Common Core State Standards? Schools or districts that join our effectiveness study will receive free reading or math materials aligned with the standards. Learn more.

Join Our Team!
We're looking for an education researcher to work on our Regional Educational Laboratory-Southeast team and in our Research and Evaluation department.
See current job openings.

Visit SEDL's library of free resources on the SEDL Web site.

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School Improvement: The Big Picture
Getting Serious About the System

Despite the wish for silver bullets for school improvement, turning around low-performing schools is a complex process. Getting Serious About the System: A Fieldbook for District and School Leaders, a new book by SEDL staff, provides a comprehensive framework for school improvement. Written by Stacey Joyner, Shirley Beckwith, and former SEDL staff member D’Ette Cowan, Getting Serious About the System is grounded in research and based on SEDL’s school improvement work in five states.

Key strategies to help educators include the following:

  • Concentrate on aligning curriculum, instruction, and assessment to state standards and the Common Core State Standards
  • Work on underlying issues that impact the system
  • Garner support from all staff members to maximize time, resources, and energy
For educators who want to learn more about this process, the companion book A Teacher’s Guide for Getting Serious About the System provides background information about systemic school improvement and helps them understand their role in the process.

Learn more about SEDL’s Working Systemically model, the basis for the systemic improvement approach used in these books.

Order the books from Corwin Press.

Tips and Tools
Free Resources

Early Warning Data System Tool
The Early Warning Data System Tool tracks ninth-grade indicators that research has shown are related to high school dropout, such as attendance and academics, and automatically flags students who are below the specified benchmarks leading to graduation. The tool provides leading indicators that enable school staff to quickly review data and plan interventions as early as 20 to 30 days after the beginning of the school year.

Learn more.

Transforming Low-Performing Rural Schools
Rural educational issues cannot be addressed by a one-size-fits-all approach to school improvement. For rural educators, current research offers some solutions and insights into turning around low-performing districts and schools. A recent briefing paper from our Texas Comprehensive Center examines how districts and schools can use the unique attributes and resources found in rural communities to help transform low-performing schools.

Read the briefing paper.

Copyright 2012 by SEDL.

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Questions or comments should be directed to:
Laura Shankland
4700 Mueller Blvd.
Austin, TX 78723
Phone: 512-391-6556
Fax: 512-476-2286

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