The mission of Professional Development is to provide quality-learning opportunities for all employees to enhance student learning.

Belief Statements

Quality instructional practices must be based on research and supported by all adults who impact the learning process.

  • High yield interventions should be applied in all school improvement initiatives.
  • Strategies appropriate to learning goals must be used.
  • Job-embedded professional learning is the preferred delivery methodology. All professional learning must support the district mission/vision and should focus on student achievement.
  • Professional learning must be valued as an integral part of the district’s strategic plan.
  • Instructional strategies should be applied to increase academic learning time.
  • Staff must demonstrate the belief that all children can learn and must communicate high expectations to students. Human Resource Development should serve as the clearinghouse for all professional learning initiatives.
  • Professional learning must foster the norm of continuous improvement.
  • Strong leadership is essential and should act to promote professional growth.
  • Professional learning must be well coordinated and focused on learning enhancement. All professional learning should be customer-oriented and mission-driven.
  • Instructional strategies should be learner-centered.
  • Real-life skills should be emphasized.
  • Student success in achieving learning goals must be the primary focus for staff and their related professional learning. The mission/vision of Human Resource Development should be supported and enhanced by all shareholders.
  • There must be continuing support of professional learning by staff, school board members, parents and community as the advocates of continuous improvement.
  • Professional learning should be viewed as an innovation in itself.
  • Shareholders should become a learning community to learn about the change process and its implications for professional learning. Financial resources must be provided to support professional learning.
  • Budget allocations should be appropriate to support ongoing, job-embedded professional learning.
  • Time should be provided for planning and learning by staff.
  • Individual, school-based, and district-wide professional learning activities should be included in a professional learning plan to meet identified needs. Evaluation should be viewed as an ongoing process involving assessment and follow-up through coaching, support systems, feedback loops, etc. and that process should drive decision-making to impact future changes.
  • Desired changes in on-the-job behavior must be supported via appropriate follow-up strategies.
  • Staff should analyze and self-correct performance as they seek/provide mutual observation, feedback and coaching.
  • Assessment should be applied to determine the impact of professional learning on student learning.

Contact Information:

Polk County School District
Jim Miles Professional Development Center
5204 US Highway 98 South
Lakeland, Florida 33813
Phone: 647-4270
Fax: 647-4269


All phone number area codes are 863

Name: Title: Phone: Ext:
Cheryl Joe Senior Director, Professional Development 647-4270 478
Patti Wilkins Professional Development Specialist 647-4270 479
Jennifer Rouse Senior Coordinator, Professional Development Instruction 647-4270 482
Lauri Christopher TRST, ACE Professional Development Certification Program 647-4270 487
Marilyn Hunt Professional Development Specialist 647-4270 480
Joanna Johnson Senior Coordinator, Intervention 647-4270 485
Caroline Beasley Analyst - Database Administrator 647-4270 491
Buffy Williams Senior Coordinator, Professional Development Instruction 647-4270 477
Lori Allen Senior Coordinator, Professional Development 647-4270 486
Keri Murphy Senior Manager - i3 647-4270 489
Monica Fales i3 Lead Mentor 647-4270 488

You may also visit our Staff Directory to contact any staff member via e-mail.

Non-Employee Professional Development Information

Persons who are not employees of the Polk County Schools may be eligible to participate in professional development activities offered by the district through NetConnect. They may also receive inservice credit toward renewal of their Florida professional educator certificate based on successful participation and completion of related follow-up processes.

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