Recipe for a Successful PLC

Ingredients for a successful Professional Learning Community (PLC):

  • 4-6 knowledgeable, motivated teachers with students and/or standards in common  (PLC Team)
  • One or more engaged, knowledgeable administrators
  • A growth mindset for all
  • Carefully chosen resources including standards-based curriculum and standards-based assessment
  • Established weekly meeting time during school day
  • Focus is student learning and results oriented


  1. PLCs “whip in” Three Big Ideas:
    1. All students learn at high levels.
    2. Helping all students learn requires collaborative and collective efforts.
    3. Focus on results -- evidence of student learning -- and use results to inform and improve our professional practice and respond to students who need intervention or enrichment.  (Learning by Doing, 14)
  2. PLCs “fold in” ongoing collaboration as they determine student learning needs
  3. PLCs “layer” common formative assessment, data collection, re-teaching resulting in increased student learning.
  4. PLCs  generously “sprinkle in” research-based strategies to foster increased student learning
  5. Nurture PLC with supportive environment.


“An ongoing process in which educators work collaboratively in recurring cycles of collective inquiry and action research to achieve better results for students they serve.”

                                            PLC Defined (DuFour, DuFour, Eaker & Many, 2010)

-Kathy Learn