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Resources for Facilitators

Welcome to the PLN Facilitator section of our website!

We hope to use this as a space to share resources, questions, and ideas among PLN faculty. If there is information you wish to disseminate to the general PLN faculty, please contact us and we will forward your ideas to our faculty listserv. In addition, please feel free to contact us with any specific questions about your seminar or workshop.


How can I become a PLN faculty Member?

First, send an email and resume with your background, knowledge of PLN and your interest in potential faculty work to our "contact us" address on the web site. Secondly, you'll need to call the PLN Director. Call the office (215-898-1984) to set up a phone meeting. Potential PLN facilitators need to do a few things to be considered for a position to teach a PLN course. S/he needs to sit through a PLN 1 course and preferably an advanced PLN course before s/he is able to facilitate PLN 1. After sitting in on one and preferably two courses, the first PLN teaching position is a co-facilitation with an experienced facilitator who will mentor the new faculty member. The mentor facilitator will make a slightly higher salary than the mentored facilitator for the first year. Typically when two experienced facilitators co-teach the salary is split in half.

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What are my responsibilities as a facilitator?

Coordinating logistics with the district liaison, reviewing Needs Assessments and PLN materials in preparation for the Summer Leadership Workshop, attending the Summer Leadership Workshop, crafting a syllabus, prompt attendance for seminar or workshop sessions, summarizing evaluations and sending them to the PLN office, submitting grades in a timely fashion, remaining in contact with the PLN office, and following all PLN/University of Pennsylvania guidelines for faculty.

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Does PLN evaluate the seminars?

Yes. At the end of the program we ask participants to fill out two evaluations: the general evaluation with questions about benefits and recommendations and the specific evaluation with a 5 point scale about the effectiveness of the facilitator(s). There is a section to evaluate a co-facilitator as well if two people are teaching the seminar.

A PLN administrator reviews every evaluation and the faculty members review them as well. They are compiled, copied and sent to the district liaison at the end of the seminar.

We ask facilitators to regularly assess the effectiveness of their seminar(s) in order to make adjustments to meet the needs of participants during the program as well using a mid-course evaluation, ticket-out-the-door, review of journals and conversations with participants.

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Can a participant drop a course?

Yes, a participant can drop a credit-bearing course. The participant must drop the course before the start of the second course session by contacting the course facilitator. If the participant drops the course after the second course session, the participant or the participant's district will be responsible for full tuition payment. 

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What is the Annual Winter Symposium? Who participates in it?

Participating districts are invited to attend PLN's annual conference, which includes a keynote address on current literacy approaches and group break-out sessions for reflecting on connections to seminar content.

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What if a district or school wants to hire a PLN faculty member outside of PLN for independent work?

All PLN faculty members are required to conduct work with PLN districts through PLN and not independently. We ask that districts/schools contact the PLN Executive Director to set up any assignments for PLN faculty on a given year or the next year. We work to maintain the integrity and continuity of PLN work and we put many resources into the training and support of our faculty members as well. If a district/school contacts you to do independent work, please request that they contact PLN directly to schedule services.

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What is a PennKey?

A PennKey and password are needed for Penn students (including PLN participants), faculty (inclulding PLN facilitators) and staff to access secure sites on The University of Pennsylvania website.  A PennKey will allow you to: access your pay and travel reimbursement information online, access information about your tax withholdings, access PLN articles and the Penn library, utilize Canvas for PLN coursework, order transcripts online and access other Penn services.

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How do I get a PennKey?

If you are a PLN facilitator and you want to obtain a PennKey, you must be active in the Penn payroll system.  If you are currently being paid by PLN or have been paid within the last three months, you are active in the payroll system.  Contact the PLN office if you have questions about your payroll status. 

Once you have determined that you are active in the payroll system, you must obtain a PennKey Setup Code (click here).  Follow the instructions on the Setup Code website and a temporary PennKey Setup Code will be mailled to your home address.  The temporary Setup Code letter will look similar to this (click here). Follow the instructions on this letter to create your unique PennKey and password.  The letter contains contact information should you require assistance or further information.

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What if I need help with my PennKey?

PLN staff cannot help you with your PennKey problems.  If you need assistance with your PennKey, visit the following site (click here)

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