Oroville and Chico’s Sustainability Story
Highlighted ILC Principle: Develop knowledge and skills through a recursive and continuous approach (learn, do, assess). Learn more about the ILC Project Principles.
This inaugural blog entry focuses on sharing work from the Oroville/Chico team in Butte County.
The Oroville team started out as a team of 2 teachers from one school. The pair worked closely with a teacher in the nearby Live Oak district. Over the past 6 years, local teachers from within and beyond the Oroville Union High School District (OUHSD) attended their ILC-led professional development sessions on topics such as: Literacy and the Common Core Standards, Resetting Professional Learning Communities, and Promoting Learning and Innovation with Technology. Since its inception, this ILC team (now a principal and 3 teachers) and OUHSD have been firmly committed to the ILC principle of learn, do, and assess/reflect in every professional learning session.
This ILC practice has spread. Now the Oroville team has identified 8 additional teacher leaders, representing all 3 schools in OUHSD, to join the ILC team in forming the OUHSD Teachers Training Teachers (T3) Team. Together they will provide all of the Distance Learning Training for Oroville teachers in 2020-21. The district is providing funds for the T3 team to develop presentations and for teachers to attend these professional learning sessions. The T3 team has learned the ILC approach to professional development and are incorporating ILC principles into the sessions they are providing to colleagues in small (virtual) groups throughout the school year. So far this year, over 100 teachers, support staff, and administrators have attended these virtual sessions. The sessions, led by local teachers with knowledge of the students in Oroville, have been well received. As one participant stated, “This was a great experience. I really enjoyed working with teachers in my district who understand the student populations we are working with.”
Last year, OUHSD’s ILC work spread to the neighboring school district, Chico USD (CUSD), when an Oroville principal familiar with the ILC team’s work became the principal at Chico High School. With the principal’s encouragement and commitment of Title II funds, two Chico High teachers joined the ILC Project to work in partnership with the OUHSD ILC team. The focus of the ILC work in CUSD in 2019–20 was on teachers leading professional learning for their colleagues on topics of their choosing (e.g., Enhancing Technology and Literacy Across Disciplines). On average, 10 teachers from different departments participated in each of the learn, do, assess/reflect cycles on a topic. Attendees reported feeling “very motivated and dedicated to following through with…” the plans they made for lessons during these sessions. Attendees further reported that their students were engaged and excited by the lesson plans that came directly out of the ILC sessions. According to one attendee who participated in a follow up session, “the real power of the ILC is this return back to assess, to meet with your colleagues…to have time to share your practices” after trying them out in the classroom. The new Chico members presented to multiple CUSD administrators, including the Director of Secondary Education, about their ILC work. Access their presentation here, and view the video responses from some attendees below.
In OUHSD and CUSD, educators are learning from their practice and with their colleagues on a regular basis. As their relationships within their school leadership teams expand and deepen, other teachers see the power and learning potential of teachers teaching teachers. In addition, the CUSD ILC member teachers offered to share their Equity Library of books, gifts from the ILC, with their colleagues. One team member used Facebook (see post below) to promote the lending library. She appreciated the opportunity she had to meet teachers and parents from her school when she delivered her books to them and was able to see firsthand how enthusiastically these resources were received.