With PD 360, Title 1 School Collaborates to Dramatically Raise Test Scores and Accelerate Teacher Improvement

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With the Help of School Improvement Network, Educators at Wellcome Middle School Raise Test Scores by Five Percent

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PD 360 has paid off for Wellcome in big ways. Since the school first implemented the professional development platform, students’ composite test scores have risen five percent

A lot can change in a year. Just ask Thomas Feller, former Assistant Principal of Wellcome Middle School, a Title 1 school in Greenville, North Carolina.

Facing the classroom challenges and limited funding typical to so many Title 1’s, Feller and the administration at Wellcome decided to take a proactive approach to impacting teacher improvement and closing the achievement gap. At a faculty meeting in November 2010, Mr. Feller introduced PD 360, an online, on-demand professional development platform for educators created by School Improvement Network. He presented educators with a new teaching video segment from the PD 360 library at every faculty meeting for the rest of the year. By January, training on the platform was in full swing.

“PD 360 allows our teachers to customize their professional development around their individual needs,” Mr. Feller emphasizes. “And it is much more than just a video site – it offers teachers the opportunity to participate in a fully functional online learning community with public and private groups, a school community, and even online classes.”

It is the community feature of PD 360, in fact, that has catalyzed more positive change at Wellcome than anything else. Seeing the power in professional sharing, Feller encouraged teachers to begin using PD 360 to supplement already established Professional Learning Communities. The platform has been used to support staff development days, where PLCs will watch videos together, and then spend time discussing and processing what they have seen.

“The structure of PD 360 allows other teachers to have conversations about those topics and work to implement changes in their own instruction in their classrooms.” explains Feller. “PD 360 allows teachers to differentiate their education so they can learn what they need to learn to improve – and it gives them the power to do so.”

And PD 360 has paid off for Wellcome in big ways. Since the school first implemented the professional development platform, students’ composite test scores have risen five percent.

Anyone can join the School Improvement Network online community for free and receive a free 30-day trial of PD 360, the world’s largest online video and professional development distribution network for educators, just by logging on to http://www.schoolimprovement.com and clicking on the free trial button.

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Duane Sprague
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