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Scholen duurzaam ontwikkelen. Bouwen aan professionele leergemeenschappen

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Abstract

In de voorbij jaren groeide de aandacht voor professionele leergemeenschappen. In een school als professionele leergemeenschap ontwikkelen en onderhouden de onderwijsprofessionals een structuur en een cultuur van samen werken en samen leren met het oog op de voortdurende verbetering van het onderwijs. Toch zijn professionele leergemeenschappen nog meer metafoor dan realiteit. Vragen naar de effectiviteit van een professionele leergemeenschap of naar de wijze waarop een school zich als professionele leergemeenschap kan ontwikkelen, zijn nog ver van beantwoord. In deze publicatie wordt uitgebreid ingegaan op deze vragen. De publicatie is gebaseerd op een project dat de afgelopen jaren is uitgevoerd door het lectoraat en kenniskring Schoolontwikkeling en Schoolmanagement van Fontys Hogescholen. Het project kende een dubbele doelstelling. Enerzijds werd een aantal basisscholen ondersteund in hun ontwikkeling als professionele leergemeenschap. Anderzijds werd kennis verzameld over die ontwikkeling: hoe verloopt die ontwikkeling, welke interventies doen er toe, wat is de rol van de schoolleider? Het is een type onderzoek dat lectoraten - die sinds 2000 aan de Nederlandse Hogescholen zijn ingericht – ambiëren: onderzoek dat niet enkel theoretisch maar zeker ook praktisch relevant is voor scholen en onderwijsprofessionals. Het boek begint dan ook met een uitgebreide schets van een school in ontwikkeling. Vervolgens worden in enkele theoretische hoofdstukken het begrip professionele leergemeenschap verder uitgewerkt, wordt het project van de kenniskring beschreven en wordt de aard van het uitgevoerde onderzoek toegelicht. In de vier volgende worden door verschillende auteurs, vanuit dezelfde perspectieven, vier scholen beschreven. In de analyse van al deze scholen wordt telkens ingegaan op de ontwikkeling van de school als professionele leergemeenschap, op de interventies (met name de bronnen, de focus en de effecten van de interventies) en op de rol van de schoolleider. Hierin wordt de ontwikkeling van de scholen getypeerd, wordt een aantal effectieve interventies beschreven en wordt de rol van de schoolleider in dit proces belicht. Op basis van deze inzichten worden vervolgens een aantal praktische handreikingen voor scholen geformuleerd. In de laatste drie hoofdstukken vindt men een aantal praktische instrumenten die behulpzaam kunnen zijn bij de ontwikkeling van de school als professionele leergemeenschap. Het betreft onder meer een matrix met behulp waarvan men eerste goede indruk krijgen van de eigen school als professionele leergemeenschap en van indicaties voor de verdere ontwikkeling van de school. verder wordt een “professionele leergemeenschap-bril” gepresenteerd. Door het “opzetten van deze bril” ziet men, bij het denken over een concrete onderwijsvernieuwing, hoe de ontwikkeling van de verschillende dimensies van een professionele leergemeenschap in onderlinge samenhang kan bijdragen aan die onderwijsvernieuwing. Ten slotte vindt men een vragenlijst waarmee men de rolinvulling van de schoolleider in een professionele leergemeenschap kan vaststellen. Het boek is in de eerste plaats bedoeld voor onderwijsprofessionals, zowel in Nederland als in Vlaanderen die een belangrijke en noodzakelijke rol willen spelen in de ontwikkeling van hun school en voor leerkrachten die hun professionaliteit verder willen ontwikkelen. Het boek is vooral geschreven voor en vanuit het primair onderwijs. Maar de beschreven ontwikkelingen, processen, interventies en rollen kunnen ook inzicht en inspiratie bieden aan professionals in andere sectoren van het onderwijs.

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... Two studies (Sleegers et al., 2013;Verbiest, 2008) suggest that effective PLCs develop capacity for professional learning on three levels: ...
... 1. Teachers frequently engage in 'reflective and in-depth dialogues' with colleagues about educational matters based on their daily practice (Wahlstrom and Louis, 2008). The goal is to clarify explicit and implicit assumptions and beliefs, to deconstruct and co-reflect on them, in order to transform practice (Verbiest, 2008). 2. Teachers move from the classroom doors in a 'de-privatization of practices', by observing each other's practices, giving feedback, planning jointly, building relationships with the neighbourhood, and engaging in dialogue with parents (Lomos et al., 2011;Wahlstrom and Louis, 2008). ...
... There is a focus on reaching a shared vision and set of values (Wahlstrom and Louis, 2008), which form the basis for shared, collective, and ethical decision making (Ibid.). PLCs work on the basis of an 'inclusive belief' according to which each child, despite whatever unique obstacles they may face, is able to learn and is supported in doing so (Verbiest, 2008). This is interlinked with what we define here as collective responsibility, since a foundation of shared child-centered values focused on respect for diversity can build a sense of collective responsibility. ...
Technical Report
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Researchers and international organizations broadly agree that the quality of early childhood education and care (ECEC), and of schools, depends on well-educated and competent staff (OECD, 2006; UNICEF, 2008; Milotay, 2016). The contemporary educating/teaching profession has become incredibly complex (European Commission, 2011a) prompting calls for stronger support of ECEC and school staff, which could be included in both initial education and continuous professional development (CPD). The complex multi-diverse societies in which we live, make it indeed impossible today to find standardized solutions for all families/children. Negotiation and reflection are then essential competences to be achieved by practitioners/teachers in ECEC services and schools in order to contextualize pedagogical practice and adapt it to the diversity of children and families. However, these competences are not prioritised by traditional forms of CPD (for example, seminars or top-down approaches). Therefore the latter need to be integrated with additional forms of CPD that focus on the active and democratic participation of staff. Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) are a valuable answer in this direction (see 28). PLCs can be described as ‘a group of people sharing and critically interrogating their practice in an on-going, reflective, collaborative, inclusive, learning-oriented, growth-promoting way’ (Stoll et al., 2006, p. 223). The goal is not ‘being a professional learning community’, but improving wellbeing and learning for children and families (Ibidem). Competent systems are necessary to create and maintain PLCs. The latter require a multilevel network of competences, structural conditions, engagement, and awareness. Many definitions have been offered of what a professional learning community is or ought to be, with the risk of losing its true meaning (DuFour, 2004). This report seeks to correct this gap, by: 1) providing a framework to explain the need for PLCs today (see 20); 2) offering a clear definition of the essential criteria that define a PLC, with concrete examples from several European countries (see 28); and 3) providing four in-depth case studies—from Belgium (Flanders), Croatia, Italy and Slovenia—which illustrate different ways of establishing and sustaining PLCs (see 38). The study ends with specific conclusions and recommendations for policy makers in Member States. It should be noted that the report focuses on services and schools for 0 to 12 years old children. However, the key concepts and conclusions could also be readapted for secondary school.
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
Article
Full-text available
Organizational Learning is an important factor in promoting school improvement. It is argued that the schools’ high performance is probably due to the fact that they function as learning organizations. Until today organizational learning, which is defined as the continuous collective capacity process for acceptance and understanding of internal and external changes in the organization, it is at an early design phase. The few empirical studies have so far been published in the international literature, are continuously arising new characteristics and dimensions to be taken into account for its construction of the school as professional learning community. This paper conducts a review of current literature, and it attempts to analyze the concepts of “organizational learning”, “school as professional learning community” in order to clarify the necessity of adopting and implementing new practices and strategies. The main purpose is the “construction” of schools that they will function as professional learning communities.
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, H πολυδιάστατη φύση του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει» 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, H πολυδιάστατη φύση του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει» 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, H πολυδιάστατη φύση του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει» 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, H πολυδιάστατη φύση του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει» 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, H πολυδιάστατη φύση του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει» 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Πολλές από τις διαστάσεις, που έχουν προταθεί από τους μελετητές είναι κοινές. Έχουν προταθεί, συγκεκριμένα, τα εξής κοινά χαρακτηριστικά που μπορούν να ευνοήσουν τη λειτουργία του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει»: κοινό όραμα (Senge, 1990;Hord, 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), κοινή αποστολή (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Dufour & Eaker, 1998), γνωστοποίηση πρακτικών (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), συνεργασία (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997;Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Silins, Zarins & Mulford, 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006), ηγεσία (Hord, 1997;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013), αναστοχαστικός διάλογος (Louis, Mark & Kruse, 1996;Bryk et al., 1997), εμπιστοσύνη (Silins, Zarins & Mulford, H πολυδιάστατη φύση του «σχολείου που μαθαίνει» 2002;Bolam et al., 2005;Bowen et al., 2007;Verbiest, 2008;Sleegers et al., 2013) και αναζήτηση (Dufour & Eaker, 1998;Bolam et al., 2005;Stoll, 2006). ...
... Different strategies of professional development are needed to answer the challenges in the field of professional development of teachers in secondary education (Muijs et al., 2014;Timperley, 2011;van Veen et al., 2010). The concept of PLCs seems to be able to make a difference here (Stoll et al., 2006;van Keulen, 2015;Verbiest, 2008). However, PLC in the educational context has become a kind of illdefined container concept. ...
... Furthermore, a balance will have to be found between individual goals and a (growing) perception among the group members that they can reach their individual goals if the other members can also reach their goals (Hornby, 2009). Based on research into developmental phases in social learning (e.g., Arrow and Cook, 2008;Drath et al., 2008;Ellis et al., 2003;Knapp, 2010;Kozlowski and Bell, 2008;Verbiest, 2008;Zaccaro et al., 2008), a number of general stages in the formation and development of SLCs can be determined (Schelfhout et al., 2015). ...
... The cluster Group dynamic characteristics has three characteristics: Mutual trust and respect, Collegial support and encouragement and Social cohesion. This cluster is about social group characteristics, which are thought to have a positive influence on learning activities and may stimulate PLC development by promoting a sense of community (Verbiest 2008). Mutual trust and respect means a supportive, affective and safe climate where problems and convictions can be voiced (Vermeulen 2016). ...
... A teacher can reflect on his 'own' teaching practice or teachers can reflect together on an 'individual' teaching practice'. If in a next measurement more teachers appear to reflect 'individually' on their work, it is a form of quantitative growth (Verbiest 2008). The distinction between individually or jointly is also important because it may mark the moment that a group of mainly individually working teachers changes into a group teachers who work collaboratively. ...
Article
For investigating a comprehensive PLC framework, instruments are needed that capture the multi-layered PLC characteristics and that take into account the complex influencing educational context. Such instruments are currently lacking. This study aims at describing the development and validation of two qualitative classification instruments usable for systematically identifying changes in PLCs. The 11 characteristics and accompanying behavioural and attitudinal indicators of a recently designed PLC framework were converted into codes and measuring values. For this conversion the ‘directed content analysis approach’ was used. The result is two classification instruments that can be used to collect and classify behavioural and attitudinal data from interviews and observations. The instruments cover all the characteristics, respectively indicators of the PLC framework and are suitable for validation by triangulation. This study contributes to the methodology for investigating PLCs by presenting two theoretically grounded and validated sets of codes, and two sets of measuring values. The latter is important for systematically developing knowledge on PLCs in educational practice. In everyday educational practice the instruments can be used to determine the state of the PLC and steps can be taken to stimulate its development.
... Reflection can be performed individually and collectively. By making this distinction qualitative and/ or quantitative growth of a characteristic can be established (Verbiest 2008). ...
... A sense of being part of a community means care for each other and mutual responsibility for the common good (Wang 2015). The characteristics in this cluster may stimulate the PLC development by promoting the sense of community (Verbiest 2008) Mutual trust and respect provide a supportive, affective and safe climate where problems and convictions can be voiced. Trust is a necessary ingredient for cooperative action . ...
Article
Full-text available
The past two decades research on teachers’ professional development focusses increasingly on professional learning communities (PLCs). Based on a literature search a conceptual framework was developed including a comprehensive PLC-concept. Comprehensive because it takes into account the complexity of the educational context. The PLC-concept outlining 11 characteristics, is embedded in a framework, containing five external factors that influence. The framework was evaluated by interviewing educational experts. The literature search and the interviews showed a great diversity of distinct PLC characteristics and a wide range of external influencing factors. Based on expert interviews, no essential elements appeared to be lacking in the framework, moreover no other perspectives on the framework were mentioned. An additional search on recent literature confirmed the constructed framework. As yet we concluded that the developed concept is sufficiently comprehensive and feasible for conducting research on PLCs.
... Different strategies of professional development are needed to answer the challenges in the field of professional development of teachers in secondary education (Muijs et al., 2014;Timperley, 2011;van Veen et al., 2010). The concept of PLCs seems to be able to make a difference here (Stoll et al., 2006;van Keulen, 2015;Verbiest, 2008). However, PLC in the educational context has become a kind of illdefined container concept. ...
... Furthermore, a balance will have to be found between individual goals and a (growing) perception among the group members that they can reach their individual goals if the other members can also reach their goals (Hornby, 2009). Based on research into developmental phases in social learning (e.g., Arrow and Cook, 2008;Drath et al., 2008;Ellis et al., 2003;Knapp, 2010;Kozlowski and Bell, 2008;Verbiest, 2008;Zaccaro et al., 2008), a number of general stages in the formation and development of SLCs can be determined (Schelfhout et al., 2015). ...
Chapter
The abundance of data and the rise of new quantitative and statistical techniques have created a promising area: data analytics. This combination of a culture of data-driven decision making and techniques to include domain knowledge allows organizations to exploit big data analytics in their evaluation and decision processes. Also, in education and learning, big data analytics is being used to enhance the learning process, to evaluate efficiency, to improve feedback, and to enrich the learning experience. Before discussing some possibilities and issues in the use of learning analytics in education, we define its concept.2.
... PLCs seem promising contexts as they can help create an environment in which teachers' professional development is encouraged and supported (Stoll et al. 2006, Vangrieken et al. 2015, Valckx et al. 2018, 2019. However, according to Verbiest (2008), the educational research literature has not yet fully explored the importance of PLCs and the ways in which PLCs can be stimulated. ...
... However, Newmann (1991) identified the importance of examining teachers' educational beliefs on these matters. The purpose of discussing beliefs is not to convince others to agree with your ideas, but to clarify practices and underlying assumptions (Verbiest 2008). ...
Article
This study explores whether the relationship between departmental leadership (i.e. group-oriented and development-oriented departmental leadership) and the interpersonal characteristics of professional learning communities (PLC) (i.e. collective responsibility and reflective dialogue) varies between departments, depending on whether teachers display traditional or constructivist beliefs. The data were collected from 197 teachers in 30 departments in 26 Flemish (Belgian) secondary schools via an online teacher survey and then analysed using multi-group path analyses. The results show no differences depending on teachers’ educational beliefs. However, teachers with a group-oriented departmental leader experience more collective responsibility and report a higher frequency of reflective dialogue in their department.
... The professional should not only be learning individually but in interaction with the team, the whole organisation and the other parties involved. This collective team learning takes place in professional learning communities (Whalley, 2001;Verbiest, 2008) and critical learning communities, in which professionals transform their practice through critical reflection. As the reality is complex, we must create a community of learners. ...
The action research project Sustainable Change in a Critical Learning Community was conducted in the Netherlands (2007–08) to improve quality in early childhood by enhancement of critical reflection at all levels in early childhood organisations: educators individually and collectively, pedagogical leaders and coaches, and (middle) management. The complex reality in which professionals in early childhood organisations operate demands a reflective attitude to knowledge and practice, but in order to achieve this, participants at every level in the institution have to be involved. Bureau MUTANT conducted this action research project in cooperation with four childcare-providing organisations. MUTANT is a small independent agency that supports professionals and institutions in early childhood, welfare and health care with innovative methods, training and consultation. Respect for diversity — with regard to ethnicity, social background and gender — is a key issue in all actions. With the results of this action research, MUTANT wishes to answer questions and worries in childcare organisations in the Netherlands and to fill a gap in the professionalisation of individuals and teams. The final target is to enhance the quality of educators and thus the quality of childcare organisations, a quality based on democratic principles such as furtherance of social change, social justice and democratic values.
... Guided by their personal learning process, teachers critically reflect on their own practice and search for options as how to integrate the new ideas into their pre-existing knowledge. This results in a deepened understanding of the didactics and can initiate changes in educational practices (Verbiest, 2008). ...
Article
Little research has investigated factors that facilitate beginning teachers’ participation in professional learning activities related to differentiated instruction (DI). This study examines environmental factors for DI learning activities in a sample of 272 beginning teachers from 72 primary schools. Multilevel analyses show that teacher education, reflective dialogue, deprivatized practice, educational type, and diversity in student population are related to beginning teachers’ use of DI learning activities (i.e., learning in interaction and changes in practice). As such, the findings revealed that beginning teachers’ participation in such activities may depend on a multitude of factors. Several suggestions regarding these factors are made. First, teacher education can provide foundational knowledge of DI applications. Second, schools can enable teachers to have in-depth conversations with colleagues and provide opportunities to observe good teaching practices. Lastly, alternative schools and schools with diverse student populations can inspire other schools to enhance participation in DI learning activities.
... The cluster Individual and collective learning is about joint learning activities and creating collective knowledge (Castelijns, Vermeulen, & Kools, 2013) and features four characteristics: Collaboration, Reflection, Giving and receiving feedback and Experimenting. The cluster Group dynamic characteristics is about social group characteristics, which are thought to have a positive influence on learning activities in the PLC and may stimulate PLC development by promoting a sense of community (Verbiest, 2008). This cluster has three characteristics: Mutual trust and respect, Collegial support and encouragement and Social cohesion. ...
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This study focused on the development of seven within-school PLCs during two school years. A total of 139 interviews, and 82 observations of PLC meetings formed the base for in-depth explorations, distinguishing various development levels in PLC characteristics. Using two validated qualitative classification instruments, data were collected to identify changes in characteristics and to track and describe development. This study explores the multiple way(s) in which PLCs develop through time, and looks at school context factors that might influence their development. Results indicated that all PLCs developed over time, however differently. The way the learning activities Collaboration, Reflection, Feedback and Experimentation were performed, showed a cautious development from individual to collective performance. Development from an incidental towards a systematic way of performing was not found in any PLC. No patterns in the development of PLC characteristics could be distinguished that might explain the influence of school context factors on the development of PLCs. In terms of practical implications, school leaders and others responsible for PLCs can be effective in fostering PLC development by tailoring their actions specifically to the needs of the PLC and by deploying a facilitator, granting collective autonomy, providing time and space and offering sources.
... It seems in higher education practice, quick wins could be reached in this regard, although more research and development would be needed to empirically consider the procedure towards more discussion on excellence. However, practical tools have been developed for educational settings (Verbiest, 2008;Vroemen, 2009). ...
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What lecturers do and think are a prerequisite for educational change. It is therefore important to gain insight into factors that influence their involvement in educational reform. This study considers the effect of leadership and managerial constructs on lecturers’ commitment to the newly implemented honours programmes in a Dutch University of Applied Sciences, by combining two models: (a) the Excellence Acceptance Model and (b) the Organisational Influence Model. This combination connects two important change factors of content and context included in a combined quantitative measurement framework. A full structural equation analysis on lecturers’ questionnaire data (N = 406) results in insight into the direct influence of executive managers’ leadership style on lecturers’ commitment in a situation of educational change. Especially, visionary leadership and the perceived discussion culture on excellence are of large influence on lecturers’ behaviour towards honours programmes. Based on these findings, directions for future research are suggested.
... Nevertheless, several nuances are required because building a PLC is by no means easy and PLCs that are fully developed seem limited in number (Bolam et al., 2005;Verbiest, 2008). Visscher and Witziers (2004), for instance, showed that collaboration in many of the departments they studied in the Netherlands was aimed at efficiency, rather than improving instruction and learning. ...
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Purpose: Department heads play a pivotal role in the functioning of departments in secondary schools. However, quantitative research about the role of departmental leadership for the development of professional learning communities (PLCs) in subject departments in secondary schools remains scarce. As PLCs are seen as promising contexts for teachers’ continuous professional development, it is highly relevant to study how department heads can facilitate PLC characteristics in their department. Research methodology: This study examines how two dimensions of departmental leadership (group- and development-oriented) relate to interpersonal PLC characteristics in departments. Survey data were collected from 248 experienced mathematics and French teachers in 62 departments in secondary schools in Flanders (Belgium). Two multilevel regression analyses were conducted with collective responsibility and reflective dialogue as dependent interpersonal PLC characteristics. We controlled for several demographic teacher variables and structural departmental variables. Findings: Our results nurture optimism about the potential of departmental leadership for interpersonal PLC characteristics. More specifically, teachers who perceive high group-oriented departmental leadership experience more collective responsibility in their department. Furthermore, teachers’ perceptions of both group-oriented and development-oriented departmental leadership are significantly related to the reported frequency of teachers’ reflective dialogues. Implications: This study suggests that department heads play a critical role in facilitating interpersonal PLC characteristics in departments. As a result, department heads need to be carefully selected and adequately supported. As this article is one of the first to offer a quantitative perspective on this matter, it offers an instrument for future studies and informs policy about departmental leadership practices.
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Fostering the development of Professional Learning communities (PLCs) should be a priority for education because of their capacity to enhance teachers’ professional development. However, in everyday educational (school) contexts studying and supporting the growth of PLCs is a complex endeavour. As a consequence, there is a lack of instruments for extensively investigating PLCs on different levels of development as well as the factors that influence the development. This article describes the first steps of the construction of measuring instruments, suitable to investigate PLCs in the complex school context: a study of the operationalisation of PLC characteristics and influencing factors into attitudinal and behavioural indicators. The operationalisation is founded on relevant literature and on educational practice, the latter by focus groups consisting of educational practitioners. This study yielded indicators for the eleven characteristics of the PLC concept and two context factors, which were subsequently used for selecting and constructing instruments. This study contributes to the research methodology for investigating PLCs and to bridge the gap between educational research and educational practice. The latter by constructing instruments that are considered relevant, recognisable and practical by educational practitioners.
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Many innovations in education are not completed, even if they are well thought out in advance. One of the main causes is the organization’s lack of learning ability, combined with a shortage of teachers’ and students’ ownership with respect to the renewal of ideas and design. In communities of learners, teachers and students collaborate and learn together in order to shape innovations in their daily practice. Their ability to learn collectively is a key factor in developing a learning organization. So far, insights into how processes of collective learning can be designed effectively, and which critical factors play a role, have been based on limited empirical research. This article’s goal is to contribute to the development of these insights, using the results of a study based on 48 cases of collective learning in communities of learners in primary schools and teacher education institutes. The results suggest that although collective learning rarely takes place in most cases, many outcomes are created that affect all community members. This leads to the conclusion that some participants create outcomes, not only on behalf of themselves but also on behalf of others.
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