History and Structure

History and Structure

The Professional Development School District began with the opening of J.J. Harris Elementary School as a Professional Development School (PDS) in August 2009.


Our History

In 2011, the Clarke County School District and the University of Georgia College of Education expanded their partnership to include the entire school district. We now have more than a dozen active PDS sites and as many College of Education faculty members serving as professors- in-residence or on-site instructors. More than 500 UGA students to participate in courses or field experiences at PDS schools every semester. In 2015, the partnership was recognized for exemplary achievement by the National Association of Professional Development Schools.


  • January 2008

    COE faculty and administrators began meeting with CCSD administrators and members of the Athens community: Discussions/Research; Site visits to existing school-university partnerships in Atlanta, South Carolina, Illinois and Wisconsin; Began to focus on the Professional Development School (PDS) model first proposed by the Holmes Group in the 1980’s.

  • August 2009

    J.J. Harris Elementary School, a new CCSD school, opened as a PDS

  • August 2011

    The collaboration grew to a PDS District to involve all schools in the county; a three-year Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the UGA Provost and the CCSD Superintendent

  • March 2015

    The PDSD won a 2015 Award for Exemplary Professional Development School Achievement from the National Association for Professional Development Schools (NAPDS) in Atlanta, GA

  • April 2016

    The PDSD celebrated 5 years of partnership since the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOU) with a special dinner event.

  • June 2016

    Camp DIVE (Discover, Inquire, Voice, and Explore), and engaging and enriching summer program,  launched with 80 Kindergarten-8th graders.

PDSD Organizational Structure

Click here to open our organizational chart.