NORTHAMPTON, MA – This fall, the Collaborative for Educational Services (CES) introduces two additional Professional Learning Communities (PLCs). The Librarian/Media Specialists PLC begins on September 29th, and the Social Justice & Equity in Schools PLC starts on November 4th.
Fiona Creed Chevalier and Suzanne Judson-Whitehouse will lead the Librarian/Media Specialists PLC. Librarians and Media Specialists throughout the region will be invited to help set the priorities for the upcoming school year during the first meeting, by reviewing topic options and weighing them in order of importance. Topic options include:
- Working with English Language Learners;
- Educator Evaluation System and District Determined Measures (DDMs) for student achievement;
- Working with Primary Sources to foster critical thinking skills in all content areas;
- Technology integration;
- Co-planning and co-teaching;
- Common Core State Standards;
- PARCC testing; and
- Working with struggling learners.
Fiona is a Teacher/Librarian at Pioneer Valley Regional Schools, where in addition to working with students to develop their research skills, she collaborated with teachers to create a rich resource of LibraryGuides. Fiona has worked with students and teachers at all grade levels, collaborating on lessons and supporting teachers to integrate technology, primary sources and Common Core into their classrooms. Suzanne has worked with teachers and librarians to develop and implement community-based history projects and primary source based lessons in all content areas. In addition, she supports teachers and librarians in technology integration and creating Common Core-connected lessons.
The Social Justice and Equity PLC will be led by Safire DeJong and Darnell Thigpen Williams. The PLC will start on November 4th from 4-6 pm. This monthly PLC will provide the space and time for participants to explore issues of social justice in schools. Participants will have the opportunity to develop support and inspiration networks across districts and schools with other educators, administrators and advocates.
Interested educators are also invited to attend an Introduction to Social Justice Education, which will be held on Wednesday, October 7th from 3 – 6pm as part of the CES continuing initiative on social justice and equity. This 3-hour introduction will explore the conceptual frameworks of social justice education and will introduce some of the pedagogical practices that are foundational to social justice work in the classroom, workplace, and other spaces.
Safire DeJong is an Instructional Designer at CES and a lecturer at UMass Amherst in the College of Education. Safire has spent the last 10 years learning about and supporting instructors to develop equity-centered curricula to be implemented at various learning sites. Safire loves supporting instructors to think about and create dynamic and relevant digital learning opportunities with students. Darnell Thigpen Williams is an Associate Director of DYS Professional Development, DYS Education Initiative at CES, with 20 years of urban education experience in a variety of settings. His interests include transforming educational systems and practices within urban school districts, alternative school contexts, and juvenile justice settings. Darnell is an adjunct professor at the Urban College of Boston.