A bridge between teacher education and schools

Professional development school district sets goals for an entire district

By Rachelle Curcio and Kate Ascetta
June 2019
Vol. 40, No. 3
University-school partnerships can be a powerful mechanism for educator professional learning, but they have varying degrees of success. In South Carolina’s School District 5 of Lexington and Richland Counties, superintendent Christina Melton wanted to make sure her district’s partnership with the University of South Carolina would strategically and systematically attend to enhancing educational opportunities for all stakeholders within the district. “What if the university and the entire school district engaged in a systematic partnership? What if we created a professional development school district?” asked Melton. Dating back to the work of John Goodlad (1994), professional development school partnerships have been identified as spaces that promote the “simultaneous renewal” (p. 632) of schooling and teacher preparation. They embody the principles of collaborative partnerships, which have been

Read the remaining content with membership access. Join or log in below to continue.

Sed ut perspiciatis unde omnis iste natus error sit voluptatem accusantium doloremque laudantium, totam rem aperiam, eaque ipsa quae ab illo inventore veritatis et quasi architecto beatae vitae dicta sunt explicabo. Nemo enim ipsam voluptatem quia voluptas sit aspernatur aut odit aut fugit, sed quia consequuntur magni dolores eos qui ratione voluptatem sequi nesciunt. Neque porro quisquam est, qui dolorem ipsum quia dolor sit amet, consectetur, adipisci velit, sed quia non numquam eius modi tempora incidunt ut labore et dolore magnam aliquam quaerat voluptatem.

Log In

Rachelle Curcio and Kate Ascetta

Rachelle Curcio ( is a clinical assistant professor in elementary education and serves as the liaison for the University of South Carolina and School District Five of Lexington and Richland Counties professional development school district partnership. Kate Ascetta ( is an assistant professor of special education and a member of the professional development school district coordinating council.


Bryk, A.S., Gomez, L.M., Grunow, A., & LeMahieu, P.G. (2015). Learning to improve: How America’s schools can get better at getting better. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press.

Fox, L., Dunlap, G., Hemmeter, M.L., Joseph, G.E., & Strain, P.S. (2003). The teaching pyramid: A model for supporting social competence and preventing challenging behavior in young children. Young Children, 58(4), 48-52.

Fullan, M. (2011). Change leader: Learning to do what matters most. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Goodlad, J. (1994). Educational renewal: Better teachers, better schools. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Levine, A. (2006). Educating school teachers. Washington, DC: Educational Schools Project.

Senge, P. (2006). The fifth discipline: The art and practice of the learning organization. New York, NY: Doubleday.

The Learning Professional

Published Date


Recent Issues

June 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed school as we know it...

April 2020

Learning professionals challenge themselves to stretch ..

February 2020

Student needs are at the center of strong professional ..

December 2019

Coaching can transform teaching, and therefore student ..