Building Organizational Capacity to Lead an Engaged Peer Learning Community
EVERY HOUR COUNTS
Every Hour Counts is a coalition of citywide organizations working to increase access to quality expanded learning opportunities for young people. Every Hour Counts’ director reached out to The Learning Agenda with a capacity-building request: strategize with us on the best design for a peer learning community to improve practice and strengthen local expanded learning systems across the country. Every Hour Counts sought a partner to support recruitment of members, develop a work plan, facilitate a kick-off meeting and prepare staff for ongoing management of a productive learning community.
The Learning Agenda Approach
For this initiative, Every Hour Counts engaged TLA as a strategic advisor and relied on TLA’s deep experience creating and facilitating peer learning communities. Based on their goals, TLA prepared a “scope and sequence” to launch the PLC, and set parameters for ongoing leadership of the group that would maximize the experience of all participants. TLA collaborated to develop a membership application that conveyed to prospective members what would be expected of them and the benefits of participating. Upon selection of the PLC, TLA designed a kick-off webinar and facilitated an initial full-day meeting of members, launching work in key areas including communications, data systems and sharing, and policy and sustainability.
To support ongoing management of the group, TLA followed up with detailed reflections and recommendations for next steps. Monthly coaching calls throughout the project ensured a smooth process and handoff, and an opportunity to check-in on any challenges. A final report documented lessons learned and recommendations for leading the community moving forward.
TLA helped Every Hour Counts with a structure, timeline and clear work plan of activities that enabled the organization to launch and effectively manage the learning community once the engagement with TLA concluded.
In Their Own Words
“I enlisted TLA’s help to strategize on the creation of a new PLC to maximize the benefits to our new members. I’m always impressed with The Learning Agenda. The team has deep experience in the field and facilitating learning communities, so there’s almost no learning curve. And, regardless of which team member I work with, I am confident I’m getting excellent guidance.”
Executive Director, Every Hour Counts