As with PLCs, the survey asked two sets of questions about Principal Learning Teams — agreement that PLTs reflected four productive characteristics and agreement about the value of PLT participation for individual participants. As with PLCs, average ratings of both sets of questions were quite high (using a seven point response scale). __ Mean ratings of PLT characteristics were 5.96 in the fall and 6.05 in the spring. Principals agreed most strongly, as they did last year, that continuous improvement of students’ literacy and numeracy achievement was a necessary part of the job (6.13 and 6.12). Mean ratings of the value of PLTs were 6.17 in the fall and 6.19 in the spring. __ The uniformly favorable view of principals about both the characteristics and value of PLTs mirrors results from last year’s evaluation and justifies continued support for PLTs by the LSA project.
Those PLT’s that had a strong and clear purpose for meeting and focus on improving student achievement functioned more effectively. At Taroona School, School Improvement was central to the way work was done and their school structure was organized upon this foundation. When collaborative groups have an agreed upon clear purpose with set guidelines and directions, they become very powerful in accomplishing their tasks.
Another piece we learned from powerful collaborative groups in the LSA project was an underlying belief that we are not good until we are all good. This belief hits at the heart of moral purpose and is a key element if well facilitated collaborative groups are to become a reality.