Introduction

The creation of Professional Development School (PDS) partnerships provides a unique opportunity for educators from the university and school sites to learn from each other and share professional expertise. It is the hope of the School of Education at Purdue University Calumet (PUC) to foster these collaborative partnerships and, while doing so, increase the effectiveness of the teacher education programs. The role of school-based educators is paramount to the success of this collaboration. Activities of the PUC/Northwest Indiana PDS partnerships are coordinated by a Steering Committee. Members of this Committee represent each of the schools and/or districts participating in PDS. University faculty also serves on the Committee. The PDS Steering Committee sets policy for the partnerships and is open to any school or district interested in the mission of this collaboration. The PDS Mission Statement was formally adopted by the Steering Committee in 1996, and emphasizes the interlocking themes of Quality, Diversity, and Collaboration. In 2001, the Steering Committee worked collaboratively with the PUC faculty to establish a conceptual framework.