The Quitman Public Schools District was nationally recognized last week as a Model PLC School.

“They are the first district in the state of Arkansas to achieve this honor and only the 19th district in the nation to achieve this status,” Arkansas Department of Education Director of Specialty Projects Missy Walley told the Log Cabin Democrat. “Quitman School District has worked hard to accomplish this honor.”

To become a Model Professional Learning Community (PLC) School, Walley said a school must:

Demonstrate a commitment to PLC concepts.

Implement those concepts for at least three years.

Present clear evidence of improved student learning.

Explain the school/district’s culture, practices and structure and submit those descriptions for consideration to the PLC Review Committee.

The small-town district was awarded Model PLC School status through the Arkansas Department of Education and by Solution Tree.

According to AllThings PLC, a professional learning community is “an ongoing process in which educators work collaboratively in recurring cycles of collective inquiry and action research to achieve better results for the students they serve. PLCs operate under the assumption that the key to improved learning for students is continuous job-embedded learning for educators.”

The school’s national PLC status shows the district has strong support from the community and within the district, Quitman Superintendent Dennis Truxler said.

“Our patrons are very involved in helping make Quitman the best place for students to be educated as possible,” Truxler said. “A good example of community support would be the passing of a 2.5 [millage] tax increase to help with teacher raisers and needed renovations.”

Along with community support, the district has educators who work diligently to ensure students are learning to the best of their abilities.

This often means pulling together resources and working alongside one another.

“As far as the school staff’s efforts, our teachers are second to none when it comes to working together to give the very best they have to offer,” the QPS superintendent said. “With the leadership of building administrators Michael Stacks and Julie Wallace, our staff constantly goes above and beyond for our students. At Quitman, we are family.”

The Arkansas Department of Education specialty projects director said it was no surprise the small-town district earned this national recognition.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed working and learning with [the] Quitman School District,” Walley said. “This is only one of many accomplishments to come for [the] Quitman School District. They are moving mountains.”

Staff writer Marisa Hicks can be reached at mhicks@thecabin.net.

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