Denver CSD recognized as national model for Professional Learning Community approach

Denver Community School District was recently named the only Iowa school to be recognized by Solution Tree for its quality and success in creating a professional learning community (PLC) environment.

Professional Learning Communities at WorkTM are schools and districts in which educators recognize the key to improved learning for students is the on-going, job-embedded learning for the adults who serve those students. The three foundational elements of PLCs include:

  1. Learning as the fundamental purpose of the school.
  2. Establishing a collaborative culture combined with job-embedded professional development.
  3. Basing the school’s effectiveness on results, not intentions.

Responding to news of the recognition, Elementary Principal Kim Tierney said, “We are humbled and honored and feel we are on the right track to improvement.”

Schools are recognized based on strict criteria, including demonstration of a commitment to PLC concepts, implementation of these concepts for at least three years, and clear evidence of improved student learning over that period. Once measurable results can be seen, the school’s practices, structures, and culture are explained and submitted for consideration by the PLC Review Committee at

Recognized model PLC schools are listed on website so that they can share their implementation strategies, structures, and performance with other educators interested in improving their schools. The site also includes tools for team collaboration, articles and research about PLCs, blog posts, and other related resources.

Denver Community School District has been implementing the PLC at WorkM process for four years and has now begun to see tangible results.   The school has also been recognized as a “National Blue Ribbon School” by the U. S. Department of Education in 2008.

Congratulations, Denver CSD staff members! We are proud to partner with you!

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