St Pius X School: research, reflection and peer support
At St Pius X School the majority of the staff meet fortnightly to share, reflect and learn about their use of technologies to address specific learning goals. This professional learning community is called the e-Learning team and arose from the e-Learning initiative of the Catholic Education office. The success of this professional learning community appears to have been built on several factors, including:
- ongoing and regular meetings,
- an emphasis on professional learning through self and peer reflection,
- a research oriented focus on improving specific learning outcomes,
- relevant and timely technical training,
- funding for teacher release and professional development, and
- strong positive leadership from both the teacher who coordinated the professional learning as well as the principal.
These factors also appear to have resulted in or enhanced a high level of staff commitment in using technology to improve student learning.
The “e-Learning” professional learning community
The e-Learning team was felt to be successful because the e-Learning coordinator was released from teaching one day each week to work with the other teachers, in addition professional development opportunities were provided for all staff and the e-Learning team met regularly with a focus on implementing technologies to improve specific outcomes.
"Work smarter, not harder "
The professional learning community at St Pius X School focussed on how they could use technology to enhance their current curriculum and improve learning outcomes. They emphasised the need to "integrate all our projects that we're doing into our normal curriculum, don't make it an extra lot of work, just integrate everything in" (Year 5/6, St Pius X School ).
We're learning how to be smarter, how to work smarter, not harder... that's been our motto all this year. (Teacher Year 5/6, St Pius X School )
The teachers did not set out to replace their curriculum or to dramatically change their practices overnight.