Late Start Wednesday & PLC Information

Professional Learning Communities (PLCs)
and
Late Start Wednesdays in Deer Creek Public Schools


The Deer Creek School Board has adopted school calendar  which includes a one-hour Late Start on Wednesdays. This Late Start configuration will provide time for our teachers to participate regularly in activities designed to promote gains in student achievement. The staff will arrive on Wednesdays at the regular time and spend one hour in teams working together. The student schedule at school on Wednesdays will start one hour later than the rest of the week. This includes the bus pick-up and drop-off schedule; all will be one hour later.

What is Late Start Wednesday?
Every K-12th grade student will start school 1-hour later than the other four days of the week.

What is a Professional Learning Community or PLC?
The basic structure of a PLC is a group of collaborative teams that share a common purpose. On Wednesday mornings, Deer Creek will have multiple groups of teachers collaborating across the district.

What will our Teachers be doing during this collaboration time?
Teachers will be meeting in grade level teams (all 3rd grade teachers for example) or content area teams (all math teachers) or vertical teams (4th and 5th grade teachers or 9th and 10th grade history teachers for example). In these teams, teachers will have uninterrupted opportunities to have meaningful conversations about specific students. Teachers will learn how to identify learning deficiencies and implement successful strategies. They will analyze data and have opportunities to make data-driven decisions about individual students. They will continually set goals for students, monitor successes and challenges, and make necessary adjustments. We know that when teachers have time to discuss students, improved achievement is the result and students win! By creating this time for teachers, we will not only see results in achievement, but in many other areas of our students’ lives.

Transportation
All bus routes will run one hour later on Wednesdays. Student pick up time at bus stops will be one hour later as will the drop off time at school. The end of the day will not change on Late Start Wednesdays. Students will be released at the same time as any other day of the week.

Accountability
The Deer Creek Board of Education has made student learning the primary focus of the district. Subsequently, the Board is committed to introducing programs to our district that are proven and lead to improved student achievement. Districts that have implemented Professional Learning Communities have demonstrated such improvement. The district is also committed to monitoring how PLC’s are working and in providing the results of our efforts to our teachers, parents, and community. As such, district reports will be made available to the public. Data tracking and reporting will occur in areas such as standardized test scores, attendance, disciplinary referrals, and participation, among others.

Parent Options

On Late Start Wednesdays, our goal is that no child will be picked up on a bus route any later on this one day each week.  For parents who need assistance with child care or supervision at an earlier time, you contact our local day care providers for availability and rates.

Late Start Wednesday Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs
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How will late start help my child?
Deer Creek School District is striving to improve student learning for all students. In order for teachers to develop assessments and instructional strategies to reach all learners, the school district designated time to allow for teachers at all grade levels and across schools to collaborate.
The time will allow for teachers to develop plans that enrich students at grade level and above grade level as well as helping struggling students.

What will teachers do during the collaboration time for late start?

The premise of PLCs is that “adult learning precedes student learning.” Teachers and other staff members learn together so that they can assist students in their learning. The following corresponding statement and questions will guide our PLC work during the year:  If we believe ALL students can learn, then:

What do we want students to learn?
How will we know they are learning?
What are we going to do if they do not learn?
What do we do if students already know it?

When we apply these questions to everything we do, we will see increased academic growth. These guiding questions will be applied by our staff, students, parents, as our framework for action as we talk about teaching and learning every day, every hour. The district believes that
teacher learning and collective work that strives to answer these questions will raise the achievement scores and make sure all students are reaching their potential.

During PLC late start days, teachers analyze student data and prepare strategies to help students who are advanced or struggling – all to improve teaching and learning. PLC time provides each
school as a whole uninterrupted time to work together – an opportunity not present during the regular school day. During the late start time, teachers are becoming experts in finding solutions to make improvements in teaching and learning for students on grade level, above grade level or struggling students.

Why do schools need collaboration time?
Currently, school scheduling limitations do not allow for uninterrupted, regular time for teams of teachers to work together. Collaboration time gives teachers time to analyze student work, identify and act on all student learning needs in a timely manner.

Don’t teachers have enough time before and after school for collaboration?
No. Teacher planning time before and after school is used to meet with students and parents and tutor students. After school, many teachers tutor or serve as athletic coaches or advisors to
student activity groups.

How will schools demonstrate that collaboration time is working?

Weekly collaboration time is structured, facilitated discussion. Agendas are set and notes are taken. Principals in each Deer Creek School will be reporting on the use and impact of collaboration time on student learning.

What day of the week will school start late?
Wednesday is the day for late start.

Are the students meeting the State requirements for instructional time in the classroom?

Yes, even with adding Late Starts to our school calendar, the District will continue to meet and exceed the State guidelines for required seat hours for all Deer Creek Public School students.

What about transportation and busing?

Buses will run one hour later on Late Start Wednesdays. Parents may drop off students one hour later than on the other days of the week.

What if I need to drop my child off at the regular time?
We understand that the one hour Late Start schedule means families may need to make child care arrangements for Late Start mornings.

Options for families may include:
Neighborhood Cooperatives
Family Members Who May Be Available One Hour A Week
Child Care Organizations
Antler Care will be available to current Antler Care students.

As a parent, what will I notice or see as a result of the Late Starts and Data Teams?

A parent will notice improved and effective classroom instruction throughout the District which will be implemented and monitored by Data Teams in each school.

Will the high school and middle school classes be shortened on Late Start days?
Yes, all class periods will be held for a shorter period of time. They will be held responsible for the teaching and learning that occurs during that time.

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