“The most promising strategy for sustained, substantive school improvement is building the capacity of school personnel to function as a professional learning community.” – Milbrey McLaughlin, Professor, Stanford University
During Rashi’s faculty weeks in June and August, and in some meetings this year, faculty members have been engaged in passion-based professional learning communities (PLCs.) Each community dove into a different topic:
- Mastery/self paced based learning
- Interdisciplinary learning
- Modes of assessment
- Building relationships through social emotional skills and habits.
The ultimate goal of these groups is to improve students’ experience and success at Rashi. Director of Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Nitzan Resnick and the PLC coordinators (Corey Roberts, Ari Marcovski, Janie Lubarsky, Jess Solomon, and Brad Meeder) identified materials for the groups to conduct their research. Some groups, based on this preliminary findings, began creating new units and assessment modes for their classes that will be observed and then reflected upon by other PLC members. In February 2023, Rashi’s PLC teams will visit schools and organizations that have already taken strides in each of these fields. They will observe classes, and interview educators and administrators.
Here is a brief note and a book recommendation from the “Building Relationships” PLC team:
“If we want to find the way back to ourselves and one another we need language and the grounded confidence to both tell our stories and be stewards of the stories that we hear. This is the framework for meaningful connection.” – Brene Brown.
Members of the Building Relationships PLC recently read Atlas of the Heart by Brene Brown. They discussed how wonder fuels passion for exploration, curiosity, and adventure, and how awe inspires the wish to understand, acknowledge, and to unite. In Chapter 7, Dr. Brown explains the relationship between compassion and empathy, “Compassion is a daily practice and empathy is a skill set that is one of the most powerful tools of compassion.” The team highly recommends Brene Brown’s book for all to read.