The necessary precursor to high levels of student achievement is deep engagement in learning, and the teacher’s own engagement is the key to achieving that. Curriculum counts and technology can help, but it is teachers who inspire students, and enthusiastically engaged teachers do that best.
“The professional teacher is a learning leader, a collaborative partner, a researcher, a reflective practitioner and a change agent with expertise in recognizing and responding to the academic, cognitive, affective and emotional learning needs of students.”
- (Inspiring Action on Education, p. 22)
We must shift from a culture of teacher isolation to a culture of deep and meaningful collaboration.
- (Getting Started, Reculturing Schools to become PLCs, Dufour, pg. 10)
Educators create an environment that fosters mutual cooperation, emotional support, and personal growth as they work together to achieve what they could not accomplish alone.
- (PLCs at Work, Dufour, Pg. xii)
Community resources should be fully engaged to support learners, including expertise, facilities, services and learning opportunities. Community resources—whether local, provincial, national or global—should actively participate in the education of learners.
- (Inspiring Education, A Dialogue with Albertans, pg. 31)
When schools regard their relationship with families as a partnership in which school and home share responsibility for children's learning, the result is an increase in the levels and types of parent involvement as well as the support that families demonstrate for the school. When this partnership is extended to include the larger community, the benefits are greater yet. Perhaps most important is that when responsibility for children's learning is shared by the school, home, and community, children have more opportunities meaningful, engaged learning.
- (Judith G. Caplan, Director of Early Childhood and Family Education, Illinois, 1998
As lifelong learners, teachers recognize that their professional practice continues to evolve as they reflect and act on new information. If teachers have information that helps them confidently identify the root of educational challenges and track progress, they can more readily develop action plans that will have a positive impact on their students.
Teachers report greater differentiation of instruction, greater collaboration among faculty, increased sense of teacher efficacy and improved identification of students’ learning needs as outcomes of data use.
- Using Data to Improve Student Achievement, Dr. Christina van Barneveld, Faculty of Education, Lakehead University