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Standard 4.3: Collaborative learning communities

Program leadership, program partners, and all stakeholders collaborate with site administrators to foster the development of collaborative learning communities to promote a program of support for all staff.

Induction/mentoring programs should establish a collaborative culture at the program level and individual schools can incorporate that professional esprit de corps into their own building environment. For the smaller programs where mentoring might be left up to individual buildings, the environment might be much different but may also rely heavily on building professional learning communities (PLC). The overall responsibility of a site administrator would be to foster a collaborative learning environment that supports all staff. Again, the size of the program, the resources, the networking system, and the creativity of all the stakeholders will determine the extent to which site administrators need to take ownership and responsibility for creating a collaborative culture.

Site administrators may also begin to seek information from the district, program administrators, or other site administrators to expand the variety of resources that are offered to promote collaborative learning and networking. There may be an opportunity for site administrators to share research-based information with their beginning teachers.

The ultimate goal would be that site administrators create an environment that encourages a climate and culture of support, including all staff members. This support by site administrators can be done on many different levels depending upon the size and mission of the district. When there is sanctioned time set aside to enhance professional learning, the end result will be beginning teachers moving forward in their own professional development. Increased student achievement will be the result.

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