Parkway e-News Story

Calendar Changes & Professional Learning in 2012-13

As reported in the October edition of eNews, the district calendar for 2012-13 will involve some changes in how time is scheduled for professional development. A different overall development model, called professional learning communities (PLC), has been adopted in conjunction with Goal #4 of Parkway’s strategic plan. Calendar changes are a vital component to support PLCs.

What are PLCs and why are they important? The PLC model, which is nationally recognized, is about better results for students. It will give our teachers more frequent opportunities to meet by grade levels, content areas, etc., for focused work to review student academic data and plan strategies that can be implemented immediately to help each child be more successful in school.

To allow these planned times for collaboration, rather than two 8-hour professional development days, there will be eight 2-hour morning PLC sessions during the year. These will occur the first Wednesday of each month (except August and January), and all schools will start two hours later than usual.

What will this mean to students and families? The goal is for students to receive more frequent, timely feedback and improved learning. It will also mean that rather than having two full days off, they will have eight days during the year when school will start two hours later than usual. Parkway has arranged with the West County Family Y-Club program to provide families with before-school child care options on those PLC days.

More details are coming soon. In March, every family will be receiving more details about the schedule changes in the mail. Included will be a copy of the 2012-13 calendar, answers to frequently asked questions as well as details about special before-school child care options available through the Y-Club.

The topic will also be discussed at our PTO presidents' meeting on February 8 and at the next Project Parkway meeting, which is open to the community. It is at 7 p.m. on Monday, February 13, at Parkway North High School, 12860 Fee Fee Rd., 63146.