Navigator Blog

3 Reasons to Engage in a Professional Learning Network

May 28, 2021

Visionary education leaders across the nation are experiencing the power of going together as a network as they transform their education systems. A network is defined as a group or system of interconnected things, and when it comes to transformation, these education leaders are connected by their shared vision of advancing deeper learning experiences for every student. 

For more than 20 years, we’ve connected innovative school system leaders through network-based approaches to learn and lead together. While we’ve observed many powerful reasons to join a professional learning network, here are our top three reasons to make it a strategic priority.

A professional learning network cultivates deeper relationships.

When future-thinking educators intentionally prioritize time to connect and support one another around a shared vision, their contributions have a significant impact well beyond their own school system.  
Belonging to a network with a renewed vision for the future of education is an energizing experience. While school systems have a shared aspiration, they are all on their own unique journey in this transformation. Network members connect and contribute to create conditions where all students are equipped to thrive today and into the future. 

The opportunity to collaborate and innovate with other district leaders from across the nation and to form new partnerships centered on school improvement and student advocacy has been invaluable.”

– Melvin J. Brown, Ed.D., Superintendent, Reynoldsburg City Schools

A professional learning network ignites a passion for learning.

Educators are lifelong learners. And to bring a vision of 21st century learning to life for students, educators must also be empowered and supported with relevant professional learning and resources.
Within a strong network, educators learn from and inspire one another with their passion for learning, sharing their work, and innovating. Through deep, trusting relationships, they share vulnerabilities, successes, and challenges as they fail forward and maximize their learning.

“There are still so many more questions than there are answers right now. That’s why we’re here today to keep learning together as a network and deepen the work happening in our districts.”

– Michael R. McCormick, Superintendent, Val Verde Unified School District, CA; Chair, EdLeader21 Network

A professional learning network, like the EdLeader21 Network, is essential to accelerate school system transformation.

We are now 21 years into the 21st century. Now, more than ever, students deserve an education that prepares them for this rapidly changing world. The connections and the learning among future-thinking educators fuel the acceleration of equitable, deeper learning outcomes for every student.

“Our school system has been energized around the collective vision for 21st century learning which has served as the cornerstone of our long-range strategic plan. Our membership in EdLeader21 has been instrumental to us crafting this work.”

– Aaron C. Spence. Ed.D., Superintendent, Virginia Beach City Public Schools, VA

Learn more about joining EdLeader21, the national network of Battelle for Kids.

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