PLP Insider for September 2019

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Office of Public Instruction

PLP Insider for September 2019

Big Idea #1 - Is It a Passing Fad or Evidence-Based?

Never Stop Learning printed on book spines

Mike Schmoker explains in the article “Focusing on the Essentials” that teacher development must “end its addiction to novelty and embrace evidence-based priority” and “make practical, demonstrated mastery of best practices its urgent and explicit goal.”  He goes on to explain how evidence-based professional learning should dominate the field over “whims, fads, opportunism, and ideology.”  

Some of the points made in the editorial may be difficult to subscribe to, however, this article is worth a read.  The questions at the end of the article are excellent considerations to assist with planning professional learning that is grounded in evidence. 

Big Idea #2 - Your Feedback is Requested

As professional learning providers, it is important to stay in the know regarding content standards revision work. Teams in Career and Technical Education, Computer Science, Library Media/Information Literacy, Social Studies, and Technology Integration met in July to create preliminary drafts of updated standards.  These are now available for feedback. To provide feedback, respond to the surveys linked below by September 30, 2019.

Negotiated Rulemaking for these standards will take place November 2019 - March 2020. The OPI will facilitate the establishment of negotiated rulemaking committees and the creation of economic impact statements as required in MCA 20-7-101. Each committee must represent the diverse circumstances of schools of all sizes across the state and must include representatives from the following groups:

  • school district trustees
  • school administrators
  • teachers
  • school business officials
  • parents
  • tax payers

The nomination forms for these committees will be available in October 2019.

The proposed adoption by the Board of Public Education is September 2020 with implementation of the new standards beginning July 1, 2021.

Big Idea #3 - Trustworthiness of Educator Coaches is Key to Success

"Coach" written on a chalk board

According to “The Character of a Coach: Success Depends on Trustworthiness” by Kay Psencik, educator coaches need to have six qualities in order to be successful and trusted by coachees.  The qualities include self-awareness, honesty, sincerity, competence, reliability, and the analysis of intentions.  Also included in the article is a sample of a philosophy of coaching and a form to use to develop your own philosophy of coaching.

Reminder: PLP Network Monthly Collaborative

A recording of the first PLP Network Collaborative is available on the OPI Professional Learning website, along with calendar reminders for our future sessions.

The next PLP Network Collaborative is from 3:30-4:30 p.m. on September 17th.  Please vote on topics you’d like to discuss during our next session. 

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.