The Role of School Librarians in Establishing and Facilitating Professional Learning Communities

Ogawa, Michael-Brian Chosaku
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Professional development for educators in K-12 schools has traditionally been one-shot workshops that were not built into their work (Darling-Hammond, 1996). Therefore, many educators have minimal sustained opportunities to augment their knowledge and skills during their careers. Schmoker (2004) recommends professional learning communities (PLC) as a method of professional development that gives teachers the opportunity collaborate in context to improve teaching and learning. Pennel (2008) believes that librarians can be critical members of PLCs, as they have much experience collaborating and nurturing relationships with teachers. Since librarians can be valuable members of PLCs, the purpose of this qualitative case-study was to determine how librarian-teacher PLCs develop, identify the role of the librarian in a PLC, and determine behaviors or practices that contribute to an effective PLC in a specific high school setting. The researcher identified the librarians as the initiators of the PLC. Their roles included leader, supporter, collaborator, and learner. Lastly, their specific behaviors and practices were based on a theoretical framework that was rooted in Hord (1997, 2003) and DuFour’s (2004) models. The researcher contributed to PLC research with this case study about the development and evolution of a librarian-teacher PLC in a Hawaii high school.
Thesis (M.S.)--University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2012.
Teacher-librarians, Learning communities, Librarians & teachers, Professional learning communities, Librarian-teacher cooperation, School librarians
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