Steve Pearce is assistant superintendent of human resources for Batavia Public Schools in Illinois. He is former principal of Jane Addams Junior High and Margaret Mead Junior High schools, both in Schaumburg School District 54 in Illinois. During his tenure at Addams and Mead, Steve led his staffs in building professional learning communities with tremendous results. Steve and the staffs of Addams and Mead have assisted other educators in launching their PLC journey by hosting interested school staffs for site visits. In addition, Steve has delivered presentations on the PLC at Work™ process to schools across the nation.
In his first year at Addams in 2008–09, Steve guided the staff to the highest levels of student achievement in the school’s 40-year history. For years, Addams was the lowest achieving school of the five junior highs in the district. In just one year of full PLC implementation, Addams became the highest achieving junior high in reading and was second to Mead in mathematics. Addams also achieved the 90/90 board goal for two consecutive years, where 90 percent of the students achieved meets/exceeds status on the state assessment in both reading and math. In 2010, Addams was recognized as a top 100 high-performing schools in Illinois for the first time in school history.
In just three years at Mead, student achievement reached the highest levels in the school’s 28-year history. In 2007, Mead was recognized in the top 50 high-performing middle schools in the Chicago suburbs for the first time. Mead received the Academic Improvement Award from the Illinois School Board of Education for standardized test score gains. At the conclusion of Mead’s second year of PLC implementation, Richard DuFour conducted an audit of the school’s progress. After evaluating Mead, Dr. DuFour stated, “Mead could serve as a national model of what middle schools should be.”
For all of these remarkable achievements, Addams and Mead are both featured on allthingsplc.info as evidence of effectiveness of the PLC at Work™ process.