Professional Development at the Heart & Soul of ISD 2142


“Nothing in a school has more impact on students in terms of skills development, self-confidence, or classroom behavior than the personal and professional growth of their teachers.”   Roland Barth, a professor at Harvard’s Graduate School of Education

For ISD 2142 – St. Louis County Schools, professional development is the heart and soul of the Q Comp program. The weekly professional development that teachers engage in, along with the peer-evaluation system, aims to improve teacher effectiveness, and ultimately, student growth. ISD 2142 is starting it’s second full year of Q Comp in the District, and have witnessed significant gains in terms of increased proficiency on the MCA math tests. Each school site sets individual elementary and secondary math goals (with Mn Dept. of Ed approval) at the beginning of the school year. Highly effective teachers understand the many ways that students learn, and PLCs (Professional Learning Communities) allow teachers the time to collaborate on instructional strategies to address the needs of students. ISD 2142 is very pleased that six of our nine sites met or surpassed these math goals in the 2011-2012 school year, with gains in proficiency 10 to 59% over the previous year’s scores.

The PLCs also work to incorporate our District initiatives, such as SBI (standards based instruction), CGI (Cognitively Guided Instruction), and the use of technology in the classroom as we go beyond textbooks. The delivery of educational content may be changing, but the ultimate goal of our schools is to make sure that all of our students are college and career ready when they graduate. Q Comp allows teachers the time needed to collaborate and makes these goals a reality.

There is no other school on the Iron Range who implements this Best Practice Q-comp model of staff development. Across the nation, school districts are striving to implement PLCs for their teachers and PLP’s for the students. The great news is that ISD 2142 has already successfully implemented both of these initiatives and have seen great results for students and teachers.

Congratulations teachers in ISD 2142 for making a difference and striving for excellence!

 ~Submitted by Kim Jirik, ISD 2142 Q-Comp Coordinator