Professional Learning Communities

A professional learning community (PLC) is more than a group of individuals meeting together to read a common book or discuss a relevant issue. According to Huffman and Hipp (2003), PLCs are a way of working; "a school's professional staff members who continuously seek to find answers through inquiry and act on their learning to improve student learning" (p. 4). Further, DuFour (2004) expressed concern that PLCs may lose their credibility as an important part of education reform unless educators think critically about the fundamental concepts, which make up the model. As a tool for school reform, Huffman and Hipp (2003) asserted that a PLC is "the most powerful professional development and change strategy available" (p. 4).