PLP Insider for August 2019

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Office of Public Instruction

PLP Insider for August 2019

Big Idea #1 - The PLP Network Monthly Collaborative is next week!

Hands with synonyms of the word "collaborate"

Please join us for the first PLP Network Monthly Collaborative, a monthly call for education-related professional learning providers throughout the state of Montana!  The calls will take place on the third Tuesday of each month from 3:30-4:30 p.m. to allow those providers that are working in K-12 schools the opportunity to participate after the school day ends.  Mark your calendars now for our first call on Tuesday, August 20th from 3:30-4:30 p.m.

The calls will be recorded, transcripted, and available on the OPI Professional Learning website if you are unable to attend live.  We will discuss topics, such as the integration of content standards and competencies into professional learning, state initiatives and goals, data-driven professional development planning, sustainable professional learning models, and much more!

The following links contain calendar invites that provide the information on how to log-in to the conference call.

You can also connect using the GoTo Meeting link or by calling 1-872-240-3212 and entering in access code 193-528-349 when prompted.

We look forward to connecting with you and collaborating on all things Professional Learning!

Big Idea #2 - Educator Choice in Professional Learning

Doors symbolizing "choices"

It can be pretty frustrating to sit through a professional learning opportunity that you already know a lot about.  We’ve all been there. Educators often know what professional learning opportunities they should take, yet they may not have the opportunity to engage in those professional learning opportunities because of mandated opportunities or lack of choice.

Andragogy, an adult learning theory, highlights the need for adults to be engaged in the planning of their learning as adults prefer when their learning is immediately relevant to their careers and life.  As examined in “First, There was Pedagogy and Then Came Andragogy” by Philip O. Ozuah, adults are motivated to learn when they have identified a problem or project in which they need to develop skills or acquire knowledge to produce change (p. 85).  It is easy to see how educator choice in professional growth activities is important when considering how adults learn.

Here are some ideas to increase educator choice in professional learning:

  • Allow educators to obtain renewal units from a variety of providers.
  • When creating your Professional Development Plan for review by the school board, emphasize educator choice and provide an ample list of professional learning opportunities for approval.
  • Consider designing PIR days with “pathways” or “create your own” professional development plan.  Partnering with regional providers or other districts can maximize the offerings available.
  • Consider approving professional learning opportunities of various modalities: face-to-face, online, and blended.  The Teacher Learning Hub contains an ample variety of free, high-quality, research and evidence-based professional learning opportunities that can be integrated with your professional development plan.

We’d love to chat with you about integrating educator choice into your professional development planning.  Contact Carli Cockrell ( or 406-444-0769) for assistance.

Big Idea #3 - Staying Updated Using GovDelivery

"Update" written on a blackboard

The new school year is upon us and we want to be sure that you receive timely updates to .  

As you have likely noticed, our newsletters have a different look.  We are now using GovDelivery, and it is easy to update your subscriptions.  You can sign up for various emails, and as professional learning providers, you may find the following topics beneficial:


  • 3 Big Ideas
  • English Language Arts
  • Mathematics
  • STEM News
  • Teacher-Librarian Newsletter
  • Montana Autism Education Project
  • Special Ed Training
  • Multi-Tiered Systems of Support

Additionally, the Monthly Summary of OPI Divisions is available to the public and highlights various OPI projects.   

This message was sent by Carli Cockrell, Professional Learning Coordinator.  You can reach Carli by email at or by calling (406) 444-0769.  More information about Professional Learning can be found on the Professional Learning webpage.   

The OPI is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation, require an alternate format, or have questions concerning accessibility, contact the OPI ADA Coordinator, 406-444-3161,, TTY 406-444-0235.